Oct. 5, 2016
QUEENS, N.Y. - Looking to build upon last season’s BIG EAST Championship performance, St. John’s Women’s Basketball Head Coach Joe Tartamella has announced the addition of three student-athletes to his roster for the 2016-17 campaign: freshman Alisha Kebbe, graduate student Kendyl Nunn and freshman Shamachya Duncan.
Kebbe, a three-star combo guard out of Philadelphia, will join the Red Storm after a stellar high school career at Neumann-Goretti, one of the nation’s finest girl’s high school basketball programs. During her final two seasons in The City of Brotherly Love, Kebbe helped lead the Saints to a combined record of 60-1, including a perfect 31-0 mark in 2014-15, and a pair of AA state championships. In each of those two campaigns, Neumann-Goretti enjoyed a top-five finish in the final USA TODAY Sports rankings, holding the top spot following her junior year and checking in at No. 5 after her senior season.
“Alisha is an extremely accomplished scholastic player, winning state titles and being a part of an undefeated team her junior,” said Tartamella. “She is a terrific athlete who can play multiple positions and score from all areas on the floor.”
As a senior, Kebbe averaged 15 points, nine rebounds, three steals and three blocks a game, earning a McDonald’s All-American nomination and winning Pennsylvania Intercollegiate Athletic Assocation District 12 MVP honors. She was also the Scholastic Play by Play MVP and the Southeastern PA player of the Year, in addition to being named to the All-League First Team.
Kebbe also gained plenty of experience on the AAU circuit, where she starred for the Philadelphia Belles. St. John’s has plenty of history with Belles products, as the program produced current team members Sandra Udobi and Tamesha Alexander. Standing at 5-10, Kebbe was ranked 22nd at her position in the class of 2016 by ESPN Hoopgurlz.
Nunn holds a bachelors degree in psychology from the University of Illinois-Chicago and will be immediately eligible for the Red Storm. She will pursue her graduate degree in sport management.
A 5-10 guard out of Chicago, Nunn brings a wealth of experience to a Red Storm roster that will seek to replace over 50 percent of its scoring from last season. As a redshirt junior for the Flames during the 2015-16 campaign, Nunn finished second on the team in both scoring and rebounding, averaging 13.0 points and 4.9 boards per outing. The Morgan Park High School product ranked fourth in the Horizon League in three-point shooting percentage (39.2), 10th in free throw percentage (71.6) and 13th in scoring after appearing in all 30 games and making seven starts. Reaching double figures 20 times on the year, the highlight of Nunn’s season came when she scored a career-high 34 points after connecting on a school-record nine three-pointers against Wright State on Feb. 26.
“Kendyl provides us with an experience and ability to score from all over the floor,” said Tartamella. “We really like her versatility and her shooting ability will be a great asset.”
A deadly accurate shooter from nearly anywhere on the court, Nunn ranked fifth in the Horizon League in field goal percentage as a redshirt sophomore in 2014-15, converting on 47.4 percent of her tries from the floor. On the season, Nunn averaged 7.6 points and 4.8 rebounds per game as the Flames finished with a 16-14 record.
Nunn spent her second year of collegiate basketball in Wyoming at Casper College, where she started all but three games for the Thunderbirds and earned Third Team NJCAA All-America honors. She averaged 16.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game that season, registering seven double-doubles and scoring 20 or more points on nine occasions.
Nunn began her collegiate career at Toledo, playing five games in 2012-13 before a foot injury sidelined her for the remainder of the year.
A standout prep player out of The Windy City, Nunn was a four-star recruit according to ESPN before signing with the Rockets. An All-State selection by the Chicago Tribune, Nunn also held offers from the likes of Ohio State and Northwestern before committing to Toledo.
Duncan, a Staten Island, N.Y., native comes to St. John’s after a successful high school career at The Patrick School in Hillside, N.J. As a senior, Duncan helped lead the Lady Celtics to a 20-8 record and a first place finish in the UCC-Watchung Divison, averaging 8.9 points and 1.6 rebounds per game. A three-year varsity player, Duncan averaged 5.1 points per game in both her sophomore and junior seasons, playing in at least 25 contests each year.
“Machi is a tremendous defender with a high motor,” said Tartamella, calling Duncan the nickname by which she is commonly known. “She can also stretch the floor with her ability to make open jumpers and has a terrific basketball IQ.”
As a senior, Duncan reached double figures on 13 occasions, including career-high 23 points against Johnson High School on Jan. 12.
The Red Storm will open the 2016-17 season on Sunday, Nov. 13, traveling to William & Mary for a 2 p.m. showdown with the Tribe.