Duke Women’s Basketball reloads with Six transfers for 21-22 Season


DURHAM – Blue Devil head coach Kara Lawson announced Friday morning that six transfers have signed scholarship agreements to attend Duke and suit up for the women’s basketball team in 2021-22.  

Lawson has inked Elizabeth Balogun (Louisville), Lexi Gordon (Texas Tech), Amaya Finklea-Guity (Syracuse), Imani Lewis (Wisconsin), Jordyn Oliver (Baylor) and Celeste Taylor (Texas).

“We wanted to be aggressive in going after players that fit how we want to play,” said Lawson.  “There are a couple things that we value highly. One is versatility. The other is two-way players — players that can make an impact on both ends. All of these players can do that. When you’re building a team, you want to have as few weaknesses as possible. That’s the goal. To have the versatility and to have players that will compete on both ends adds a lot to our team next season.”

“All of these players are motivated to win. We have a group that not only wants to win but wants to have success with other players,” said Lawson.  “That type of team mentality was important when we talked to each of these players. To have that buy-in is critical. We are excited to get them on campus this summer.”

A look at the transfers —

Elizabeth Balogun
6-1  l  Guard/Forward  l  Senior  l  Chattanooga, Tenn.
Previous Schools:  Louisville & Georgia Tech

•    Member of Nigerian National Team
•    Appeared in 57 contests, while making 42 starts over two seasons at Louisville
•    Helped lead Louisville to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2021
•    Was a part of back-to-back ACC Regular Season Championships in 2020 and 2021
•    2018-19 ACC Freshman of the Year at Georgia Tech, averaging 14.6 points, and ranked eighth in the country among freshmen
•    2018 McDonald’s All-American
•    2018 Jordan Brand All-American
•    Ranked as a top 10 recruit by All Star Girls Report at No. 9, No. 12 recruit by Blue Star and No. 17 by Prospect Nation

For more information on Elizabeth Balogun click here

Lexi Gordon
6-0  l  Guard  l  Graduate  l  Hurst, Texas
Previous Schools:  Texas Tech & UConn

•    Saw action in 48 games, while making 45 starts over two seasons with Texas Tech
•    Averaged 15.7 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 2020-21
•    Ranked 14th in the Big 12 in scoring and tied sixth in 3-point field goals per game (1.9)
•    First Team Academic All-Big 12 (2019-20)
•    2017 Jordan Brand All-American
•    Ranked as high as No. 11 in her class

For more information on Lexi Gordon click here

Amaya Finklea-Guity
6-4  l  Center  l  Graduate  l  Dorchester, Mass.
Previous School:  Syracuse

•    Appeared in 115 games, while earning 96 starts in four seasons at Syracuse
•    Blocked 99 shots and hit 50.5 percent of her field goals over her career
•    Helped lead Syracuse to three NCAA Tournament appearances
•    ACC All-Freshman Team (2017-18)

For more information on Amaya Finklea-Guity click here

Imani Lewis
6-1  l  Forward  l  Senior  l  Willingboro, N.J.
Previous School:  Wisconsin

•    Second Team All-Big Ten (2020-21)
•    In three seasons, started 84-of-87 contests at Wisconsin
•    Collected 1,198 points, 722 rebounds and 29 double-doubles in those three years.
•    Academic All-Big Ten (2020-21)
•    Second-Team All-Big Ten (2019-20)

For more information on Imani Lewis click here

Jordyn Oliver
5-10  l  Guard  l  Junior  l  Prosper, Texas
Previous School:  Baylor

•    One-time USA Basketball Gold Medalist
•    In two seasons, appeared in 48 games, while making three starts
•    Owns a career 2.3 assist-turnover-ratio
•    Helped lead Baylor to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2021
•    Won back-to-back Big 12 regular season and tournament championships in 2020 and 2021
•    2019 McDonald’s All-American
•    2019 Jordan Brand All-American
•    Ranked as high as No. 12 in her class

For more information on Jordyn Oliver click here

Celeste Taylor
5-11  l  Guard  l  Junior  l  Valley Stream, N.Y.
Previous School:  Texas

•    Three-time USA Basketball Gold Medalist
•    In two seasons, started 52-of-58 contests at Texas
•    Helped lead Texas to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2021
•    All-Big 12 Freshman Team (2019-20)
•    Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll (Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020)
•    2019 McDonald’s All-American
•    2019 Jordan Brand All-American
•    Ranked as high as No. 6 overall in the class of 2019

For more information on Celeste Taylor click here



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