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Louisville guard Hailey Van Lith enters transfer portal

Cashmere High grad averaged 19.7 points a game as a junior with Cardinals

By DOUG FEINBERG, AP Basketball Writer
Published: April 8, 2023, 2:32pm

Louisville’s Hailey Van Lith has entered the transfer portal.

The star guard, who finished 12th all-time in scoring at the school with 1,553 points, will graduate in May, earning her degree in finance in three years. She has two years of eligibility left because of the COVID year.

“We thank Hailey for her contributions to this program, this school and this community,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said Saturday. “She has done everything we have asked of her over the past three years, and we wish her the very best in her final collegiate season and beyond.”

Van Lith’s final game was in Seattle — 140 miles west of her home in Cashmere — where the Cardinals lost to Iowa in the Elite Eight. Van Lith scored 27 points in that 97-83 loss. She averaged 19.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game this season.

“It’s been an honor over the last three years to have had the opportunity to pour my passion and heart into Louisville,” Van Lith wrote on Instagram. “This city has impacted my life in so many ways and helped shape me into the person I am today. The Louisville community has given to me selflessly. I will never forget your unwavering support.”

Louisville picked up transfer guard Jayda Curry from Cal earlier this week. Aneesah Morrow of DePaul, who was a second-team All-American, announced her plans to transfer on social media. She averaged 25.7 points and 12.2 rebounds this season.

Van Lith, Morrow and Curry are three of the big names that have entered the portal this year. There are just under 1,000 Division I women’s basketball players in the portal as of Saturday morning, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because many of the players haven’t publicly announced their decisions to transfer.

Stanford’s Lauren Betts, who was the consensus No. 1 high school recruit last year, is one of those players in the portal who hasn’t publicly announced her decision to transfer. The 6-foot-7 center played in 33 of the Cardinal’s 35 games this season, averaging 5.9 points and 3.5 rebounds in just under 10 minutes a game.

Transfers had a big impact on the NCAA Tournament that was won by LSU last Sunday. Angel Reese, who was named the Final Four Most Outstanding Player, transferred to the Tigers from Maryland and Alexis Morris came to LSU in 2021 after spending time at Baylor, Rutgers and Texas A&M.

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