After helping Arizona reach its first national title game and earning her master’s degree, forward Trinity Baptiste decided it was time to make her professional basketball dreams come true. The first step was getting drafted in this year’s WNBA draft, but she wasn’t able to turn that into a roster spot with the Indiana Fever. That wasn’t the end of the dream, though, as Russian team BC Samara announced that she has signed with the club for the 2021-22 season.
#бксамара Тринити Баптист — новичок «Самары»!— БК Самара (@bk_samara) June 23, 2021
Тринити Баптист, финалист чемпионата NCAA, выбранная на драфте WNBA, продолжит карьеру в нашей женской команде.
Предлагаем болельщикам познакомиться с американским форвардом:https://t.co/1IaSDHM06U pic.twitter.com/STK9fNFpHb
Samara plays in Superleague 1, the second-tier league in Russian women’s basketball. Last season the team went 22-8 and advanced to the finals of the league’s playoffs. They finished second after losing to Rostov in the title game.
Baptiste spent one year at Arizona after stops at Northwest Florida State College and Virginia Tech. Despite being a grad transfer in 2020-21, she had the option of staying in college for another year after the NCAA granted an extra year of eligibility due to the pandemic. After her team’s showing in the NCAA Tournament, she decided it was time for the next step in her career.
Baptiste was named All-Pac-12 honorable mention in her only season in Tucson after being honored as the ACC Sixth Player of the Year in her final season at Virginia Tech. She led the Wildcats with 6.1 rebounds per game and was their third-leading scorer with 8.6 PPG. She upped those numbers when it mattered the most, scoring 9.5 PPG and grabbing 7.3 RPG in the NCAA Tournament as Arizona fell one basket short of a national title.
USC transfer Endyia Rogers takes official visit to Arizona
Rogers is in Tucson this week for her official visit. The sophomore point guard is choosing between Arizona and Oregon. Rogers visited Oregon earlier in the month and waited to visit the UA until Adia Barnes was done coaching Team USA in Puerto Rico.
She would be a big pickup for the Wildcats. Point guard is an area of need after losing All-American Aari McDonald to the WNBA Draft, and Rogers earned All-Pac-12 honors this season after leading USC in points (14.4), rebounds (4.4) and assists (4.3) per game.
“I think one more point guard would be great because Taylor (Chavez) can play the 1, 2 or 3, Anna Gret (Asi) could play a little bit at the 1, but doesn’t really want to,” Barnes said in May. “Great teams have three options for point guards. In our system, two point guards can play together. So Taylor can play with the new person or Taylor and Shaina (Pellington) can play together.”