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Women’s basketball teams signs two juniors for the upcoming season

UNF women’s basketball team announced the signing of two new players from Alabama to join the Ospreys for the upcoming Division I season.

Both basketball players have played previous college ball and will bring experience to the Ospreys.

Standing five feet and 10 inches tall, new junior college transfer and All-American forward Margaret Bell is coming from Shelton State Community College’s squad in 2007-08. She earned second team All-American honors after averaging 13 points and six rebounds for her team.

“Margaret has a tremendous basketball IQ, and we feel like she will be a great addition to our squad,” said head coach Marry Tappmeyer in a press release. “She has three years of eligibility left, and we expect her to make an immediate impact.”

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Named a first-team all-regional selection and first-team Northern League selection, Bell will be capable of providing the drives needed for the A-Sun Conference, while also taking tournament honors throughout her season.

For the SSCC Bucs, Bell knocked down 54 percent of her free throws to help the Bucs to a 31-5 record and a seventh place finish at nationals. Bell was injured during the 2008-09 season.

“This year Bell wasn’t able to play for me because she tore her ACL, but last year she was a very aggressive player that finds a way to score,” said SSCC head coach Madonna Thompson.

Bell is not only aggressive on the court, but also dominates in academics where she was metro all-academic selection and second-team all-metro selection at Minor High School.

Another signee the Ospreys are proud of is junior DeAdria Hilliard, coming from Birmingham Southern College and Indian River State College. Once BSC dropped to NCAA Division III, Hilliard moved to IRSC where she served as starting shooting guard. She helped the IRSC Pioneers to the Southern Conference title and number one seed in the NJCAA Division I Region 8 state tournament.

The Wendy’s High School Heisman nominee and captain for the NJCCA Indian River team, Hilliard has complied a .390 shooting percentage from the three-point range, also hitting six or more from the long range on two occasions.

“We are very excited that DeAdria has decided to join our program,” said Tappmeyer. “She is a tremendous long range threat that runs the floor exceptionally well and will add depth and experience to our guard positions.”

Also recruited by South Alabama, Columbia and Miami, Hilliard is as driven academically as she is on the court, and a high-quality student-athlete, said Tappmeyer.

A 3.8 GPA at IRSC helped her earn a spot on the National Honor Society and was a Bright Futures award-winner in high school while graduating in the top ten percent of her class.

Hilliard will be the second Osprey from her family, as her sister Tamesha earned a letter in women’s basketball during the 2000-01 season.

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