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May 20, 2004

Columbia, SC –

Yolanda Jones, who was the Most Valuable Player in the 2004 National Junior College Tournament after leading her Trinity Valley (Texas) Community College team to the national championship, has signed an athletic scholarship to play women’s basketball at the University of South Carolina.

Jones, a 6-0 guard/forward from Lumberton, N.C., averaged 17 points, seven rebounds, three steals and shot 59 percent from the field this past season. She was chosen a first-team NJCAA All-America and was considered to be the top rated junior college player in the nation. Jones led Trinity Valley to the 2004 national title and a perfect 32-0 record. During her two seasons at Trinity Valley, the Cardinals posted a 62-1 record. Jones was also named first-team all-conference.

“Yolanda is an extremely talented and athletic player who can score from virtually anywhere on the floor,” said Susan Walvius, Gamecock head coach. “She is a multi-dimensional player who can play several different positions. Yolanda can really run the floor in transition and we believe she will be an immediate impact player for us at South Carolina.”

Carolina returns 11 players from last year’s squad, including Lauren Simms, a Columbia native who was chosen to the SEC All-Freshman team last season.