The Wisconsin Badgers women’s basketball team has received two verbal commitments for their 2021 recruiting class over the past couple of weeks. First, Krystyna Ellew (Chicago, Ill.), a 5-foot-10 guard, out of Taft High School committed on May 13 and then 6-foot-4 big Sacia Vanderpool (Byron, Minn.) out of Byron High School joined her a few weeks later.
So happy to be committed to the University of Wisconsin. Thank you to everyone who recruited me along the way, and thank you to my family and coaches! pic.twitter.com/oZkzthTrxd— krystyna ellew (@KrystynaEllew) May 13, 2020
Ellew is, what the kids call, a walking bucket. She was described by Midwest Hoops Spotlight as: “a highly skilled junior point guard who scores the ball at a high rate. Shoots it incredibly well off the dribble with great range hitting multiple threes well beyond the three-point line. Rises up quickly in the mid-range and knocks down tough contested jumpers at a high percentage.”
Her range, as can be seen in this highlight, is pretty much unlimited and she’ll need to be guarded as soon as she steps off the bus.
Heading into her senior year, Ellew is already Taft’s all-time leading scorer and set the single-game record (58 points vs. Lane Tech) in January. Illinois, Mizzou and DePaul were her other three finalists, according to the State Journal who has an excellent write-up on Ellew.
COMMITTED ❤️ #OnWisconsin @BadgerWBB @FBCtheNorth @ByronGirlsHoops pic.twitter.com/jl6tp4QQGM— Sacia Vanderpool (@sacialynn) May 22, 2020
Vanderpool is the ultimate Wisconsin legacy case as she is now the fourth (!!!!) generation of her family to attend UW. “Wisconsin always felt like it was meant to be for me,” said Sacia Vanderpool, “When I was younger, we’d always go to games there on campus. I think I was about three years old when I went to my first one. My dad (Brian Vanderpool) went to Wisconsin, as did my grandparents, my great grandparents, and also my aunt. There is really a special connection for me there.”
She has a promising inside-outside game that allowed her to average 15.1 points, 9.3 rebounds and three blocked shots last year for Byron, after averaging 12 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks per game as a sophomore. She shot 55.4 percent on two pointers last season, 42.9 percent (12-for-28) on 3-pointers, and also made 80.8 percent of her free throws.
Vanderpool shows nice touch around the basket and on defense she doesn’t try to swat the ball into the stands, instead blocking shots to her teammates or herself so that she gets possession.
It was probably good that the Badgers got her verbal because recently she had been receiving offers from LSU, Texas Tech and Virginia Commonwealth with others sniffing around as well, according to the State Journal.
The Badgers have one more spot in their 2021 class and it would appear that it is reserved for 5-foot-9 4-star guard Matyson Wilke (Beaver Dam) who is ranked as the No. 76 player in the country by ESPN.