Huntley’s 6-2 forward Ali Andrews took all the drama out of the recruiting wars early by committing to University of Illinois Friday prior to the start of her junior year.
The Courier-News Player of the Year in 2013-14, Andrews averaged 18.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, 2.0 assists and blocked 76 total shots last year in leading the Red Raiders to a Fox Valley Valley title and a berth in the sectional.
Andrews set a school scoring record with 576 points last year and has 1,111 points in two seasons, third most in school history behind Sam Mader (1,655) and her sister, Sam Andrews (1,465), who is a freshman set to play at Truman State.
“We’re really excited for her,” Huntley coach Steve Raethz said. “It’s my 16th year and she’s the first player we’ve had in the program who has committed to play at a Division 1 program.
“She’s worked extremely hard to put herself in that position.”
Marquette, Southern Illinois and DePaul were among the other schools to make offers to Andrews. Also, Michigan, Kansas State and Iowa had shown interest.
“Getting the opportunity academically and athletically is big for her at Illinois,” Raethz said.
Key for Andrews in the recruitment process was competing for her AAU team, Midwest Elite.
“It brought her a lot of exposure over the summer and plenty of college coaches saw her,” Raethz said. “Now she’ll be able to focus on basketball when we get started with practice (Nov. 3).”