Auburn Women's Basketball Signs Three for 2012-13 Season
AUBURN - The Auburn women's basketball team signed three players to National Letters of Intent during the early signing period for the class of 2012. Cabriana Capers, a 6-1 forward from Bolingbrook, Ill., Chadarryl Clay, a 5-7 guard from Chattanooga, Tenn., and Nicole Tanner, a 6-3 forward from Hoover, Ala., will join the Tigers for the 2012-13 season, head coach Nell Fortner announced Wednesday.
"I am really excited about this class," said Fortner. "By picking up a great guard in Chadarryl Clay and a couple of outstanding post players in Cabriana Capers and Nicole Tanner, we are adding some players that have the potential to do some pretty special things in their time at Auburn."
Capers is rated a three-star prospect by ESPN's Hoopgulrz and is rated as the No. 35 post prospect in the country. She helped Bolingbrook High School to a state championship last season, her second as a member of the team. Bolingbrook also finished the 2010-11 season ranked as the No. 2 high school team in the nation in USA today's Super 25 rankings.
A two-sport athlete, she was an IHSA All-State selection as a junior in both basketball and track & field. Capers, who plans to enter the pharmacy program at Auburn, also plays club basketball for the Bolingbrook Raiders and helped the team to a No. 2 national ranking last year after placing seventh the year before.
"Cabriana is just a 6-1 phenomenal athlete and she is a beast on the boards," said Fortner. "She can rebound it, put it on the floor, and get your fast-breaks started. Her future is just so bright because she will just continue to get better and better.
"She comes from a great high school program, the best in the country from Boilingbrook High School in Chicago. I have a lot of respect for their head coach, Tony Smith, and what he has done for that program."
Clay is rated as the No. 77 overall player in the country and 12th-best guard in the country according to ESPN's Hoopgurlz. A four-star prospect, she plays for Chattanooga's Girls Preparatory School and the Georgia Elite club team.
She led her high school team to a 28-1 record and a state championship as a junior, averaging 15.6 points and 6.0 assists per game. A two-time All-State selection, she was also named the TSSAA Division II-AA Miss Basketball and the Chattanooga Times-Free Press MVP as a junior. She also was named to the Best of the Preps All-Tournament Team after leading her squad to the tournament title.
As a sophomore, Clay averaged 17.2 points, 5.4 assists and 3.1 steals en route to earning All-State, All-Region and All-County honors. Off the court, she has a 3.7 grade-point average and plans to go into the pharmacy program at Auburn. She is a member of the National Honor Society and ran on the state championship 4x100 relay team in 2010.
"Chadarryl is a great point-guard and she has excellent ball handling skills, great vision on the floor, and can get the ball to where she wants it," said Fortner. "She is one of those ‘threads the needle' kind of passers, but then she can really hurt you with the three. She brings a lot of skill to that position and we are really excited about her."
Rounding out Wednesday's signees is Tanner, a three-star prospect out of Hoover High School in Hoover, Ala. The younger sister of Auburn sophomore Tyrese Tanner, she has also played on the Alabama Twisters and Georgia Ice club teams.
Tanner has been a part of a Hoover team that has tallied a 100-9 record during her three years with the team, finishing as the Alabama 6A State runner-up each season and ranking among the top 30 teams in the country.
Ranked as one of the top five prospects in the state of Alabama, Tanner led Hoover in rebounding as a junior and was the third-leading scorer. She was named All-Metro, All-Region and to the Regional Tournament Team. As a sophomore, she was invited to the Fila Top Ten All American Camp.
She helped her club team, the Alabama Twisters, finish in the top 15 in the nation each of the last three seasons, including a fourth-place finish a year ago. Tanner also competes on Hoover's track and field team and was named All-State as a thrower last season.
"I feel like we've been recruiting Nicole for five years, which I guess we have since Tyrese has been here for two," said Fortner. "Nicole is a post player inside, and just really brings us great size. Her future is very bright and she has really progressed in the last year at Hoover, which is another great program.
"That's another great thing about this class of kids, they have come from really good high school programs. They know how to win and they have been coached well. Hoover is one of the best high school programs in the country as well, so it is good to get another one from there."
The Auburn women's basketball team will open its 2011-12 season Friday at Mercer. Tipoff in the game is set for 6 p.m. CT at the University Center.