April 25, 2003
For the second consecutive year, South Carolina has had two women’s basketball players selected in the WNBA Draft. On Friday, Jocelyn Penn was chosen by the Charlotte Sting with the ninth overall pick of the draft (first round) while teammate Petra Ujhelyi was chosen with the 16th overall pick (second round) by the Phoenix Mercury.
Last year, Shaunzinski Gortman was nabbed by the Charlotte Sting in the first round also as the ninth player selected, before being traded to Minnesota. Later in the third round, Teresa Geter was selected by the Washington Mystics as the 32nd overall player taken in 2002.
“I’m very excited,” said First Team All-SEC forward Jocelyn Penn. “It feels good to know where I’m going to play this summer. I’m excited to have the opportunity to play in the WNBA. It’s something that I’ve dreamed about. I don’t know that much about the Charlotte Sting except they like to run so I think I’ll fit right in. It’s great that I will be able to play in Charlotte so my family and friends in South Carolina and Georgia will be able to watch me play.”
“I watched the WNBA Draft on ESPN in the basketball office through the first round and then it went off the air. I didn’t want to sit by the computer and have to keep hitting refresh while waiting for my name to pop up. So I came down to the court and started shooting. I’m excited about playing in the WNBA and going to Phoenix. I wasn’t really nervous before the Draft today. I had done my part and now it was up to the WNBA coaches to evaluate me. I knew that I couldn’t control the way the Draft went.”
Penn and Ujhelyi will both report to their respective WNBA training camps on May 1st with the first preseason games scheduled for May 6th. The 2003 WNBA season begins on May 22nd.
Currently, there are four Gamecocks in the WNBA:
Shannon Johnson Connecticut Sun (Formerly with Orlando)
Selected in WNBA Supplemental Draft when ABL folded
Shaun Gortman Minnesota Lynx
Selected in the first round (ninth pick) in the 2002 WNBA Draft by the Charlotte Sting
Jocelyn Penn Charlotte Sting
Selected in the first round (ninth pick) in the 2003 WNBA Draft by the Charlotte Sting
Petra Ujhelyi Phoenix Mercury
Selected in the second round (16th pick) in the 2003 WNBA Draft by the Phoenix Mercury