HAMMOND, La. – Hutchinson Community College forward and New Orleans native Kyla Williams will continue her athletic and academic endeavors as a member of the Southeastern Louisiana women’s basketball program, Lady Lion head coach Ayla Guzzardo announced on Friday.
Williams, a 5-11 forward, prepped at Cabrini HS and will have two years of eligibility remaining. Williams is the fourth addition for 2017-18 for Guzzardo and her staff. Williams joins freshmen Morgan Carrier (New Iberia, Louisiana) and Caitlyn Williams (Brusly, Louisiana), as well as junior forward Jyar Francis (Ponchatoula, Louisiana), who is currently enrolled at SLU after transferring from Wichita State and will be eligible at the end of the Fall 2017 semester.
“We felt that if we wanted to compete in the Southland Conference and in our pre-conference games, we needed to improve our team’s overall athleticism,” Guzzardo commented. “With the additions we’ve made, we feel we’ve exceeded our expectations in terms of the caliber of athletes that we’ve been able to add to our program.”
Guzzardo was pleased to have Williams return to Louisiana after spending two junior college seasons in Kansas.
“Kyla is a talented young lady and we’re excited to have her back home,” Guzzardo said. “She is a forced down low, has great footwork and has the ability to defend. We expect Kyla to come in next year with her post experience and fit into our system seamlessly.”
Kyla’s assets off the court will also benefit the program, according to Guzzardo.
“Kyla is a very smart young woman,” Guzzardo stated. “She comes from a great family that is very supportive of her and our university. We’re excited to have Kyla complete her career as a Lady Lion.”
Williams played the past two years for Hutchinson CC, a traditional juco national power. In her two years with the Blue Dragons, she averaged 6.4 points and 3.9 rebounds per game.
Prior to going to Hutchinson, Williams was a key player for a Cabrini team that advanced to the Class 4A semifinals as a senior, averaging 13.8 points and 9.7 rebounds per game for the Crescents. Following her career at CHS, she represented her alma mater in LHSCA All-Star Game.
Williams is the latest member of her family to compete in the Southland Conference. Her father, Kevin, played men’s basketball from 1987-89 at McNeese.
Williams will make her collegiate debut when the Lady Lions open the 2017-18 season in early November.
Southeastern Louisiana 2017-18 Women’s Basketball Additions
Morgan Carrier – 5-9 – G/F – New Iberia, La. – New Iberia HS*
Jyar Francis – 6-1 – F – Ponchatoula, La. – Wichita State – Ponchatoula HS**
Caitlyn Williams – 6-0 – F – Brusly, La. – Brusly HS
Kyla Williams – 5-11 – F – New Orleans, La. – Hutchinson (Kan.) CC – Cabrini HS
* – Signed during November signing period
** – Currently enrolled at Southeastern and will be eligible at end of fall semester