By Ian Smith, CycloneFanatic.com ContributorFollow Ian on Twitter @IanWSmith3
CycloneFanatic.com’s coverage of Iowa State women’s basketball is brought to you by our good friends at Wilson Toyota of Ames, located at 2212 S. Duff Ave. in Ames.
Is 11 Iowa State’s new lucky number? If Jadda Buckley has anything to do with it, it will be soon.
Buckley – a class of 2013 recruit – committed to the Cyclones on Friday, or in other words, on 11-11-11. It’s not a coincidence. The Mason City native wears No. 11 for her All-Iowa Attack team.
“It was a big moment – 11 is pretty special to me,” Buckley said. “I thought it would be great timing.”
Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly probably thinks so. All-Star Girls Report rates Buckley as the No. 27 best player in the class of 2013, and the seventh-best point guard. Buckley is No. 53 in ESPN’s rankings.
Being a 2013 recruit, Buckley wasted little time in picking the Cyclones. It was an easy choice for her.
“Obviously, the fan base is amazing,” Buckley said. “Coach Fennelly – to play for him is going to be an honor. With all the players at Iowa State, I’m really looking forward to joining the team. Iowa State is a great place to be.
“I knew it was right. I’ve talked to Coach Fennelly a lot and he’s been very honest with me. He is just a great guy to be around. I really enjoy being around the coaching staff at Iowa State.”
Last season, Buckley led Mason City to a 19-6 record and the Mohawks’ first ever berth in the state tournament. She averaged 16.3 points per game, connected on 37.5 percent of her 3-pointers, added 72 assists and 78 steals.
“I love to get up and down the court, look for open teammates down the court so they can get a shot off,” Buckley said.
After Buckley’s commitment Friday, Iowa State can continue to concentrate on its 2013 class after inking three 2012 players on Tuesday. The Cyclones coaching staff should have no problem finding top-notch players. After all, Buckley plans on being the lead recruiter.
“I’m more than willing to communicate with other recruits and get some great teammates to play with,” she said. “I obviously want to play with great players. I’m more than willing to help out with that.”
The Cyclones tip off the 2011-12 season tonight looking to extend its run of NCAA Tournament appearances to seven-straight seasons. With Buckley now in the fold, that streak could last a lot longer.