Pitt Panthers Kiesel Selected In WNBA Draft


Mar 23, 2015; Knoxville, TN, USA; Pittsburgh Panthers head coach Suzie McConnell-Serio talks to guard Brianna Kiesel (3) during the game against the Tennessee Lady Volunteers during the second round of the women

It took her fourth and final year of eligibility, however Pitt Panthers guard Brianna Kiesel was able to achieve her goal of making the NCAA Tournament. Now she will take the next step as she was selected with the 13th pick in the WNBA Draft by the Tulsa Shock.

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“It sounds amazing, I’m so blessed for the opportunity to make it into the WNBA,” Kiesel said. “That has been a dream of mine and I am going to go out there and give it my all. It was amazing to hear my name called. Being here with my coaches, friends, family and teammates, I have such a great support system. The University of Pittsburgh has blessed me with so many great opportunities.”

Kiesel is the second ever Panthers player to be drafted. Shavonte Zellous who was selected 11th in the first round of the 2009 draft was the first.

“This is a special day for Brianna Kiesel, her family and Pitt women’s basketball,” Pitt head coach Suzie McConnell-Serio said. “We are so proud of her and excited about the opportunity she has been given by a great organization in the Tulsa Shock. Coach Fred Williams and President Steve Swetoha are getting a first class player and person. She has worked so hard for this moment and we wish her the best of luck at the next level.”

Most projections had Kiesel taken with the 11th selection by the Minnesota Lynx, however the pick was traded to the New York Liberty.

Kiesel will depart Pitt leading the program in career minutes and ranks fifth in points [1,938] and assists [433]. This past season, Kiesel was recognized as the All-ACC First Team, All-ACC Defensive and Academic Teams. She also was a WBCA Region 2 All-America Nominee.

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  • The Shock finished the 2014 season at 12-22 overall. Kiesel joins guards Odyssey Sims and Skylar Diggins on the Shock.

    “There is no question Brianna was a leader, but what she did this year really solidified her as a true leader,” said Steve Swetoha, President of the Tulsa Shock. “She is a really good shooter and can create her own shot. We watched some games this season where she simply took over.

    “The McConnell sisters knew what they needed to do to get her ready for this, and we trust them, so that was important to us. We had her rated high on our board from a guard prospective. She was a top guard in the ACC. We want her to come in and compete for a position. We expect her to make our team better.”

    Earlier in the draft, the Shock selected Amanda Zahui B of the University of Minnesota with the second overall selection and then chose Mimi Mungedi of Nevada University to round out their draft selections.

    The WNBA season begins June 5 and the Shock will have a road contest against the Minnesota Lynx to open the season.

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