FORT MYERS, Fla. - Florida Gulf Coast University head women’s basketball coach Karl Smesko has announced the addition of transfers Joyce Holloway (Chicago, Ill./Thornton Fractional South HS/Jefferson College) and Autumn Lau (Mt. Wolf, Penn./Northeastern HS/St. Francis College), who will join the program for the 2011-12 season.
Holloway, a 5-foot-9 guard, will have two years of eligibility beginning in 2011-12 after spending the last two seasons at Jefferson College (Missouri), which is a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and the Midwest Community College Athletic Conference (MCCAC). A transfer from St. Francis College (NY), a member of the Northeast Conference (NEC), Lau will also have two years of eligibility but will have to sit out the 2011-12 season due to NCAA four-year transfer rules.
Holloway received MCCAC All-Conference and NJCAA All-Region XVI honors last season after averaging 14.4 points, 2.2 assists and 1.7 steals, while shooting 45 percent from the field and 35 percent from the three-point line. The rising junior was selected as Jefferson College’s 2010-11 Scholar Athlete of the Year after maintaining a 3.82 grade-point average and also earned the Missouri Community College Association Student Leadership Award in 2010.
“Joyce played for a very good junior college program,” said Smesko. “She is really good at breaking defenses down with penetration, and has a knack for getting to the foul line.”
Lau, a NEC All-Freshmen team selection in 2009-10, led the Terriers in multiple categories, including points (12.2), rebounds (5.2) and three-point field goals made per game (1.7) last year. The 5-foot-10 forward shot 34 percent from the behind the arc and averaged 12.5 points and 5.7 rebounds over two seasons (58 games) at St. Francis. Lau also ranks second in SFC’s record books for three-pointers made in a single-season (78, 2009-10).
“Autumn has already proven to be a very productive player at the NCAA Division I level,” Smesko said. “She is a 3-point threat who is strong enough to guard inside and help on the boards.”
Holloway and Lau are the third and fourth additions to the 2011-12 edition of the Eagles. They join guard Shayla Ball (Hillsboro, Ore./Hillsboro HS/Clackamas CC) and forward Anthoula “Anthi” Chatzigiakoumi (Athens, Greece), who signed National Letters of Intent in April.
The Blue and Green finished the 2010-11 season with a 28-4 overall record (17-3 A-Sun) and secured the program’s second Atlantic Sun regular season championship and fourth consecutive WNIT automatic bid. FGCU ended their four-year Division I transition period with four automatic bids to the WNIT, two Atlantic Sun regular season crowns and an overall record of 100-25. The Eagles, who led the nation in three-point field goals made per game (10. last year, return four of five starters for the 2011-12 campaign, including the team’s leading scorer in second team All-Conference performer Sarah Hansen (McKean, Pa./General McLane HS).