Prahalis is the third Buckeye to be chosen in the first round of the WNBA Draft.
April 16, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio State All-American point guard Samantha Prahalis was drafted sixth overall by the Phoenix Mercury in the 2012 WNBA Draft Monday at the ESPN Studios in Bristol, Conn.
Prahalis joins Jantel Lavender (Los Angeles Sparks, 2011) and Jessica Davenport (now a member of the Indiana Fever) in 2007 as the only Buckeyes to be drafted in the first round.
The Commack, N.Y., native is the sixth Buckeye to be selected in the draft in the last seven years and the seventh during head coach Jim Foster's tenure.
"I'm so relieved and excited," Prahalis said. "It's crazy when I think about that I'm going to go and play with Diana Taurasi and - that whole team, there's so many good players, it's crazy. And I'm going to be living in Phoenix ... wow. I just hope I can come out and contribute and help (the team)."
She said she's more than ready to make the transition from college to the WNBA.
"I think I am. Now, it's more like a business. You're dealing with women, some who have kids, some who are younger, so it's a whole different thing. But I think I'm ready. Coach (Foster) has gotten me to the point that I'm mature enough to handle different situations, so I think I'll be ready."
Prahalis, the Big Ten player of the year and first team USBWA All-American, led the Big Ten with 22.5 points per game in conference play this season and led the conference in assists (6.5) and minutes played (37.5) during the regular season. She also ranked among the top 5 in free throw percentage, steals, 3-point field goals and assist/turnover ratio.
This season she became the Big Ten's all-time assists leader (901), finished fourth on the Ohio State all-time scoring list (2,010) and in the process became just the second player in Division I history to record at least 2,000 points and 900 assists in a career. Prahalis, who was named the Big Ten player of the week four different times this season, saved her best performance for her final game at Value City Arena when she set a school scoring record with 42 points in the win over Minnesota, breaking the 18-year-old mark of 40 set by Katie Smith in 1994. Prahalis finished the season with 14 games with at least 20 or more points and 19 games with at least six assists.
Ohio State's WNBA Draft History
|1998||Adrienne Johnson||Cleveland Rockers||Exp. Draft||8|
|1999||Katie Smith||Minnesota Lynx||Player Allocation|
|2001||Jamie Lewis||Washington Mystics||3||41|
|2002||Tomeka Brown||Orlando Miracle||4||55|
|2003||Courtney Coleman||Connecticut Sun||2||13|
|2006||Debbie Merrill||Connecticut Sun||2||28|
|2007||Jessica Davenport||San Antonio Silver Stars||1||2|
|(traded to New York Liberty)|
|2007||Brandie Hoskins||Seattle Storm||3||33|
|2008||Marscilla Packer||Phoenix Mercury||3||41|
|2011||Jantel Lavender||Los Angeles Sparks||1||5|
|2012||Samantha Prahalis||Phoenix Mercury||1||6|