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April 22, 2004

Columbia, SC –

Cristina Ciocan, who scored 1,013 points for the University of South Carolina women’s basketball team during her four-year career (2001-04), has signed a free agent contract with the Charlotte Sting of the WNBA. Ciocan becomes the fifth Gamecock player in the past three years to sign a contract with a WNBA team.

USC’s starting point guard throughout the majority of her career, Ciocan is the school’s all-time assists leader with 615. The native Romanian averaged 11.5 points last season, after scoring 13.6 points per game in 2003. Ciocan played a major role in USC’s back-to-back NCAA Tournament seasons, 2002-03, in which the Gamecocks finished sixth and 15th, respectively, in the final national polls.

“We’re extremely excited about Cristina signing with the Charlotte Sting,” said USC head coach Susan Walvius. “Her size (6-0) allows her to play big as a point guard and she has that knack of bringing out the best in her teammates. She was instrumental in our team’s success in 2002 and 2003 and is another example that players who come through our program have a tremendous opportunity to go on and play professionally.”

“We like the fact that Ciocan has good size at the point guard position,” said Trudi Lacey, General Manager and Head Coach of the Sting. “She sees the floor well and is very good in the transition game.”

Other former Gamecocks who have signed to play in the WNBA over the past three seasons include Shaun Gortman, Teresa Geter, Jocelyn Penn, and Petra Ujhelyi.