Silver Stars Select Center Jayne Appel With The No. 5 Pick In The 2010 WNBA Draft

>> Audio: Ben Hunt of Sasilvertars.com talks with Jayne Appel

SAN ANTONIO, April 8, 2010 – With the no. 5 overall pick in the 2010 WNBA Draft presented by adidas, the San Antonio Silver Stars today selected center Jayne Appel from Stanford University. Additionally, the Silver Stars selected forward Alysha Clark from Middle Tennessee State in the second round (17th overall) and Alexis Rack from Mississippi State in the third round (29th overall).

The Connecticut Sun, who acquired the no. 1 overall pick from New York via Minnesota, selected Tina Charles from the University of Connecticut. For the full WNBA Draft board, visit www.WNBA.com/draft2010.

“We’re really pleased to be able to bring a quality post player and a quality person in Jayne Appel to San Antonio,” said General Manager Dan Hughes. “We feel fortunate that we had the opportunity to draft her. We also feel fortunate that we can bring the nation’s leading scorer in college, Alysha Clark, who brings incredible quickness and scoring ability to the Silver Stars. And Alexis Rack is a player that we have had on our board, following closely, and her degree of athleticism is very attractive to the Silver Stars.”

This season, Appel helped Stanford finish 36-2 and advance to the 2010 NCAA Women’s Final Four in San Antonio, where they fell to undefeated Connecticut. The 6’4” center from Pleasant Hill, Calif., averaged 13.2 points and 8.7 rebounds in addition to leading the Cardinal in blocks (58) in the regular season, collecting a multitude of accolades along the way, including Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award All-America First Team, State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team; Associated Press All-America Second Team; ESPN.com All-America Second Team; Wade Trophy Finalist; Wooden Award Finalist; Pac-10 Player of the Year; and All-Pac-10 First Team.

“I’m so excited to be coming back to San Antonio, I really liked the atmosphere from playing in the Final Four and I hope that I can make a positive impact for the Silver Stars,” said Appel.

In addition to her collegiate successes, Appel was selected to team camp for the 2009 USA Basketball World University Games; was a member of the gold medal-winning USA Basketball team at the 2007 Pan-American Games; and, in 2006, helped the USA Basketball U18 Women’s National Team win a gold medal at the FIBA Americas U18 Championship in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“All the players that we drafted were players that we didn’t think we could get with our picks, we thought that their value was higher than where they fell, so we’re very excited for these players to be joining us,” said Head Coach Sandy Brondello. “Jayne Appel carried an injury this year, but we evaluated her over her college career and we feel that she can be an impact player in the WNBA for years to come. Alysha Clark was the best scorer in the nation who’s also very athletic, so we’re excited to bring someone of her caliber to our team. And Rack is a good combo guard and has had a good college career, and we’re looking forward to her brining her game to our training camp to compete against our players.”

Clark, a 5’10” forward, was the nation’s leading scorer for the second consecutive season; she tallied 821 points in 122 games for an average of 28.3 points per game this season after finishing the 2008-09 season with an average of 27.5 ppg. She helped the MTSU Blue Raiders reach the first round of the NCAA Tournament and finished the season first on the team in points (821), first in rebounds (337), second in assists (99), second in blocks (19) and third in steals (71). In her career, she tallied averages of 23.2 points, 11.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.1 steals per game. Clark played two seasons at Belmont before transferring to Middle Tennessee State and earned conference Player of the Year honors all four years in the Atlantic Sun Conference and the Sun Belt Conference, respectively.

Along with Appel, Clark was one of 10 finalists for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award and was one of five players chosen to the First Team. The award marked her fifth All-America honor in 2010 after being recognized by the United States Basketball Writers Association, Associated Press (Second Team), NetScouts Basketball (Third Team) and WBCA/State Farm Coaches' (Honorable Mention). In addition, the The Mt. Juliet, Tenn., native was named a Wade Trophy finalist.

With its pick in the third round, San Antonio selected Rack, a 5’7” guard from the Mississippi State team that advanced to the Sweet 16 (Dayton Regional) in the NCAA Tournament by beating fellow Silver Stars draftee Clark and MTSU in the first round before falling to Florida State. Rack helped her Lady Bulldogs end their 2009-2010 campaign with the program’s best finish in school history with a record of 21-13 and their sixth NCAA Tournament appearance. She tallied 13 points in the Sweet 16 game, including 3-of-10 made three-pointers that helped her end her career as the Southeastern Conference’s all-time leader (340). Rack also finished her collegiate career with 1,756 points putting her third all-time in MSU’s history.

Rack was named to the All-SEC First Team in 2009 and 2010 and collected the Gillom Award (2009), Gballmag.com Young All-America accolades (2007) and a spot on the SEC All-Freshman Team (2007). A native of Franklin, La., Rack averaged 13.4 points, 2.9 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game in her career.

The Silver Stars open the 2010 regular season on May 15 with a 7 p.m. tip-off against the visiting Atlanta Dream. Full and partial season ticket plans are on sale now. Visit www.sasilverstars.com or call (210) 444-5090 for more information.