The Eastern Kentucky University women’s basketball team signed three new players on National Signing Day on Wednesday.
Marta Urbano, Elise Solé and Brie Crittendon have officially signed their National Letters of Intent to play for head coach Samantha Williams and EKU for the 2021-22 season.
“I am looking forward to adding this talented class to our program and current roster,” Williams said in a press release. “I think they bring an added dimension that will complement the current players we have here. Not only are they all high achievers on the basketball court, but they are in the classroom as well.”
Williams said that the new additions will help EKU women’s basketball get back on track and build a strong program to compete in the conference.
“They are high character individuals and the type of kids we wanted to build this program with and bring to the Richmond community. Brie, Marta, and Elisa are going to be a part of the foundation that gets EKU back on the map in the Ohio Valley Conference and will be ready to compete,” Williams said.
Urbana is a 6-foot-1 forward from Badalona, Spain, a city near Barcelona. Marta was recognized early as being one of the 15 best players in the region and began playing basketball for one of the top clubs Femenì Sant Adrià.
During her time with Femenì Sant Adrià, Marta played a major role in helping the club to numerous championships in Spain. Urbano then played for Boet Matarò in the U18 competitions in the highly regarded LF2 division. Marta was teammates in Spain with fellow signee Elisa Solè.
“We are very excited to add a player of Marta’s caliber to our program as she had interest from power 5 programs,” Williams said. “Any time you can get a player of her caliber it is a good thing. She has great size and the ability to shoot the three at a high rate. Her versatility will complement the players we have and she will be a big part of the future.”
Solé is a 5-foot-8 guard from Sant Andreu de Llavaneres, a small town on the Catalan coast near Barcelona. She started playing basketball with the club 3 Vilas and later joined Uniò Esportiva Matarò. Elisa played for Boet Matarò in the U18 competitions where she had several games scoring more than 30 points, was named an MVP, and made her debut in the Spanish Division of LF2 at only 16 years old.
“Elisa is going to be a player who has an immediate impact with her ability to shoot the three and be a consistent offensive threat. She plays with swag and a presence on the court that is energizing,” Williams said. “Her confidence will be contagious and she will provide competitiveness to the team that we are looking forward to.”
The final signee for the 2021-22 class comes from Union, KY. Crittendon is a 5-foot-10 guard from Ryle High School. As a junior, Crittendon helped lead her team to a 23-11 record and a Ninth Region championship. She averaged 15.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game during her junior campaign. Crittendon was named to the Louisville Invitational Tournament All-Tournament team, NKCA all-conference team, and was named Ninth Region Most Valuable Player.
As a junior, she helped lead her team to a 33-5 record and the school’s first state championship in women’s basketball. Crittendon had offers from Tennessee at Chattanooga, Austin Peay, and Bellarmine.
Williams is excited to recruit another player from Kentucky and to build her program with local players.
“I am thrilled to have Brie joining our program, she is another in-state player that will represent the state of Kentucky as we continue to build,” Williams said. “We want to recruit and sign the best players in the state to go along with the other members of our team.”
Williams is also looking forward to Crittendon’s toughness on the court and excellence in the classroom.
“Brie will bring a toughness and aggressiveness to the guard position that will be seen. She has high-character and achieves both on the court and in the classroom, her academic achievements parallel her athletic success and that is important in our program,” Williams said.
The EKU women’s basketball season is set to tip-off on Nov. 25 at McBrayer Arena against Bellarmine University.