McCall’s WNBA dreams slip to second round, but her new team is thrilled

McCall’s WNBA dreams slip to second round, but her new team is thrilled

Former Ridgeview High School and Stanford basketball star Erica McCall didn’t go in the first round of the WNBA draft, but her new team has no complaints about where she ended up.

McCall was taken No. 17, or the fifth pick in the second round of the WNBA draft, by the Indiana Fever, and there was no worries about taking her in the second round.

“We’re ecstatic,” said Fever coach Pokey Chatman told the Indianapolis Star. “It was a no-brainer. How she plays, where she played, the characteristics like her motor, it fits the culture of winning.”

The Fever was taking in the second round after trading a first-round selection as part of a February trade to acquire five-time All-Star Candice Dupree from the Phoenix Mercury.

“She’s got so much upside and so much potential ahead of her,” said Fever General Manager Kelly Krauskopf on the team’s website. “In terms of all her skill work, including shooting the 3, her best days are really ahead of her. There were many times in many games this year, when I watched Stanford, that she would hit a key 3-pointer.”

Some experts predicted that McCall would land as a top five pick, but Krauskopf, like Chatman, was thrilled to find McCall, who scored a career-high 14.9 points per game in leading Stanford to a Final Four appearance this season, at No. 17 in the draft’s second round.

“When we talked before the draft and Erica McCall’s name came up,” Krauskopf said, “we saw her as a top 12 or 13 pick. We didn’t think she would fall to us. She’s a great athlete and a high-energy player. She can shoot the 3, she can rebound, she can block shots and affect the game.”

McCall’s older sister DeWanna Bonner is an eight-year veteran with the Phoenix Mercury, and has helped that team to a pair of WNBA titles.

McCall is the daughter of CSU Bakersfield women’s basketball coach Greg McCall. McCall joins Nikki Blue as the only other Bakersfield player to be selected in the WNBA draft. Blue was a star at West High and UCLA before playing five seasons in the WNBA. She’s now an assistant coach for CSUB with Greg McCall.

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