Junior College Athletic Association All-American Hatty Nawezhi (Brussels, Belgium) has inked her National Letter of Intent to join the Florida State Women’s Basketball Program. The 6-foot-2 forward will be eligible for the 2017-18 season and have two years of eligibility remaining.
“Hatty brings length, speed and most importantly a big heart to our basketball program,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “I love her ability to connect on and off the court.”
For the last two seasons, Nawezhi (pronounced Nah-We-Z) attended Northeastern Oklahoma A&M and proved to be a double-double waiting to happen. In her recent sophomore season she averaged 13.4 points and 9.7 rebounds while shooting 54.3 percent from the floor. Nawezhi earned All-America honors after breaking single-season program records for blocked shots (83) and double-doubles (15).
Nawezhi is also the career leader at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M with 141 blocked shots and 25 career double-doubles in her two-year stint. In her most recent season she had stretches where she piled on double-doubles in seven straight games and another stretch where she had double-figure points and rebounds in seven of eight games.
As a sophomore, she led her school for the second straight year to a Region II championship after delivering 14 points and 12 rebounds in an 86-59 win over Northern Oklahoma Enid. She finished the year with first-team all-conference and all-region honors.
In her freshman season in 2015-16, she was also efficient from the floor shooting 55.8 percent (150-of-269). Among many of her standout performances was a 31-point, 10-rebound effort on March 2, 2016, against Northern Oklahoma Tonkawa. She finished ninth nationally as a freshman with 83 blocked shots.
As a freshman, Nawezhi earned MVP honors from the Region II Tournament after leading the Lady Norse to a title over Northern Oklahoma-Enid 80-58. In that contest she scored 17 points, had 12 boards and posted five blocked shots. She led her squad to a 29-4 overall record.
With the losses of senior post players Ivey Slaughter and Kai James, Nawezhi’s addition is significant for the Seminoles. She will combine with rising seniors Chatrice White (6-foot-3), Ama Degbeon (6-foot-2) and ACC Player of the Year Shakayla Thomas to give the Seminoles another significant presence on the glass. Nawezhi’s outstanding athleticism and ability to protect the rim fits the mold of her position mates for next season.
FSU has ranked in the Top 7 nationally in rebounding margin in each of the last three seasons, a statistic that bodes well with Nawezhi joining Florida State. FSU has also ranked first in the ACC in rebounding margin in each of the last three years.