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    Thursday, June 13, 2024

    Sarah Strong ‘official’ at UConn, completes 2024 signing class

    East forward Sarah Strong, right, shoots over West forward Kennedy Smith during the first quarter of the McDonald's All-American girls' basketball game April 2 in Houston. Strong, the No. 1 recruit in the nation, who committed to UConn on April 6, made it official recently by signing her letter of intent, coach Geno Auriemma announced Tuesday in a press release. (Kevin M. Cox/AP Photo)

    Storrs — UConn women’s basketball head coach Geno Auriemma announced the sign-ing of No. 1-ranked recruit Sarah Strong as an “official” member of the Class of 2028 on Tuesday.

    Strong gave a verbal commitment to attend UConn on April 6.

    “We’ve been very close with Sarah for a long time, and we’ve seen her grow and develop into as good a player out of high school as we’ve seen in quite some time,” Auriemma said in a press release. “The skill set that she has is both brand new and fits today’s game perfectly, and it’s also a throwback to an age when it didn’t matter what size players were, they played the entire game. They passed, they shot, they handled the ball, they rebounded. I think we’re getting a pretty special player and a special person.”

    A 6-foot-2 forward from Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina, Strong joins No. 7-ranked Allie Ziebell and No. 11-ranked Morgan Cheli in UConn’s freshman class. UConn has ESPN’s No. 2 overall class coming to Storrs this fall.

    “I think we filled a lot of the needs with this class,” Auriemma said. “The players we have can play multiple positions. Allie, Morgan and Sarah are all versatile. They can all put the ball in the basket and that’s a big priority for any program. To have three players coming in that can immediately have an impact on your team is pretty unique.”

    The 2024 Naismith High School Player of the Year, Strong was selected as a McDonald’s, Naismith, SLAM and Jordan Brand All-American. She also earned 2023 and ’24 North Carolina Miss Basketball and Gatorade North Carolina Player of the Year honors. Strong was an MVP for the McDonald’s All-America game.

    In three seasons at Grace Christian School, Strong averaged 23.0 points, 16.0 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 3.3 steals and 2.3 blocks per game. As a senior, she averaged 21.0 points, 16.8 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.8 steals per game. Strong led Grace Christian to three straight NCISAA state titles and finished her high school career with 41 straight wins. She totaled 2,302 points and 1,628 rebounds.

    Strong helped USA Basketball to gold at the 2023 FIBA 3x3 U18 World Cup and 2022 FIBA 3x3 U18 World Cup. She was selected to participate in the U18 National Team trials beginning May 15.

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