Regarded as one of the top NCAA Division I basketball recruits in the St. Louis area, Granite City senior Addaya Moore spent the majority of her summer traveling throughout the United States visiting different colleges in an effort to find the school that was right for her future — both and off the basketball court.
That school is the University of Illinois.
“It was fun traveling all over the country this Summer. It seemed like every week we were going to a different place,’’ Moore said. “But from the moment I got to Illinois, it just felt right. I just really connected with the coaching staff right away. I feel like they can help me become a better person and help prepare me to play at the next level after college.
“My goal is to play either in the WNBA someday or if not there, overseas someplace.’’
With several family members along with Granite City coach Whitney Sykes-Rogers, Athletic Director John Moad and Granite City Principal Daren DePew on hand, Moore took the first step towards her goal when she signed her NCAA Division I letter-of-intent on Wednesday during a ceremony at the high school.
Moore also considered Clemson, Marquette and Columbia University, among others.
“It was a tough decision. I really liked Clemson,’’ Moore said. “Playing high school basketball in Illinois, it’s always been kind of a dream to go to the University of Illinois.
“To have the decision made is kind of a weight off my shoulders. Now I can concentrate on the books and and helping my team have a good year.’’ Moore will major in communications at Illinois.
From Riverview Gardens to Granite City
Moore, a 5-foot 11 1/2 guard-forward, played her first two years at Riverview Gardens High School in Missouri. A year ago, Moore wasted little time in establishing herself as one of the premier players in the Southwestern Conference.
Despite drawing most of the attention from opposing teams, Moore averaged 19 points and seven rebounds per game, while making nearly 54 percent of her shots from the floor as she led the Warriors in most offensive categories.
Sykes-Rogers said Moore was a real leader on the court.
“Where can Addaya play. We played her wherever the best match up was,’’ Sykes-Rogers said. “She made an impact on our basketball team. She’s a great person with a tremendous work ethic on top of being an excellent basketball player.
“At the college level, she’ll have to put some weight on and they (Illinois) will have her in the weight room to get her bigger and stronger. I see her as an off-guard/small forward at the college level.’’
Moore, who has played all over the court both at Riverview Gardens and at Granite City High School, hopes to play at the off guard/small forward positions at Illinois.
‘They recruited me as an off guard/small forward. That’s where I want to play and where I feel I am best at,’’ Moore said. “I’ve worked on my perimeter shooting and I’ve improved in that are and I know I’ve got to get stronger and continue to improve in all areas of the game. I’’m willing to do that.’’
Teammates for four more years
Valuable members of an Edwardsville girls basketball program which continues to dominate large school basketball in southern Illinois, Tigers seniors Makenzie Silvey and Crist’eon Waters will be teammates for four more years. Both Silvey and Waters were expected to sign NCAA Division I scholarship offers to attend Southern Illinois University at Carbondale this week.
Silvey, a 5-11 guard, averaged 16.7 points a year ago while Waters, a 6-0 forward, averaged 10.7 points a year ago for the Tigers. Edwardsville, which returns four starters from a team which reached the Class 4A Super-Sectional a year ago, is expected to be one of the top ranked teams in the state once again during the 2016-17 season.
Troeckler to become an SIU-Edwardsville Cougar
One of the top all-around players in the St. Louis area and a two-time Class 3A all-state selection, Civic Memorial senior Allie Troeckler, was expected to sign to attend Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville on Wednesday.
The 5-10 Troeckler averaged 22.6 points per game during the 2015-16 season and shot 56 percent from the floor while picking up 8.2 rebounds per game.