- Dream drafts Xavier center with No. 8 pick in WNBA draft -

ATLANTA, April 11, 2011— The Atlanta Dream selected center Ta’Shia Phillips from Xavier University with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2011 WNBA Draft. The Dream also added forward Felicia Chester from DePaul and guard Kelsey Bolte from Iowa State.

“Overall, I think we had a really good draft,” said Dream General Manager & Head Coach Marynell Meadors. “We added depth and really got better on the boards and defensively. Ta’Shia Phillips is a tough rebounder and defender who will make a tremendous pro. Then we were able to add another great rebounder and defender in Felicia Chester, who I think will really fit into our system. And in Kelsey Bolte, we picked up a guard with height who can shoot the three and defend.”

Phillips, a 6-6 center, finished her collegiate career as both the Atlantic 10’s and Xavier’s all-time leading rebounder (1,552 rebounds), ranks second in career blocks (209) and third in all-time scoring (1,895 points). A two-time A-10 Defensive Player of the Year winner and three-time A-10 All-Conference first team selection, Philips became only the third player in school history to surpass the 1,000 point and 1,000 rebound marks for her career. She averaged 15.9 points and 12.4 rebounds as a senior.

The Dream also acquired Felicia Chester, a 6-3 forward from DePaul University, in a draft day deal with the Minnesota Lynx as the two teams swapped second round selections. In exchange for Chester (the No. 14 pick), the Dream sent Australian forward Rachel Jarry (No. 18 pick) to Minnesota along with a 2012 second round draft pick.

An honorable mention All-BIG East selection, Chester finished her career with 1,129 points and 751 rebounds. She averaged 11.3 points, 6.8 rebounds and shot 58% from the field as a senior. Chester is DePaul’s seventh WNBA draft pick and the highest selection by any former Blue Demon.

In the third round, the Dream selected guard Kelsey Bolte from Iowa State with the No. 32 overall pick. Bolte, a 6-1 guard, was a unanimous All-Big 12 first team selection and Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American in 2011. She averaged 16.9 points and 5.2 rebounds per game as a senior.

The Atlanta Dream is the defending Women’s National Basketball Association’s (WNBA) Eastern Conference Champion. The team tips off the 2011 season at home on June 5 against the New York Liberty at Philips Arena. The Dream enters its fourth season this summer as part of the WNBA, the world’s longest-running women’s professional sports league. For ticket information, visit or call (877) 977-7729.