Chase, Gibson pick Maryland Girls friends now, teammates in '94 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

April 29, 1993|By Kevin Eck | Kevin Eck,Contributing Writer

Sonia Chase of McDonogh and Kelley Gibson of Talbot County's Easton became friends after a mutual acquaintance introduced the two talented basketball players last month.

After the juniors finish their high school careers, they will be teammates as well.

Chase, a 5-foot-10 guard/forward, and Gibson, a 5-11 center, have orally committed to attend the University of Maryland.

Maryland's coaching staff apparently envisions Chase and Gibson as the Terps' backcourt of the future.

"They told us we're the next Tammi Reiss and Dawn Staley," said Chase, referring to the former Virginia guards who led the Cavaliers to three straight trips to the Final Four.

In accordance with NCAA rules, Maryland is not permitted to comment on recruits until they have officially signed.

Chase averaged 19.4 points and 9.0 rebounds this season and was named to The Baltimore Sun's All-Metro first team. Considered one of the area's top perimeter players, Chase also improved her inside game.

Gibson is considered by some area coaches to be the state's best all-around player. This season, she averaged 26.6 points, 18.0 rebounds, 6.0 steals, 6.0 assists and 4.0 blocked shots in leading Easton to the Class 1A state championship.

Although she's a center, Gibson was also Easton's best ball-handler and three-point shooter. She scored 39 points on 15-for-22 shooting -- including four three-pointers -- in a Class 1A state semifinal win over Milford Mill last month at UMBC.

That's where Gibson was introduced to Chase.

"A friend of mine who knew her said we should meet because we

have similar qualities in basketball," Chase said.

They met again during an unofficial visit to Maryland a month later.

"We became good friends and discussed about coming to Maryland," Gibson said. "We decided Sunday night that we wanted to go."

Chase and Gibson cited their respect for coach Chris Weller and the school's academic program as their main reasons for picking Maryland.

"Maryland has everything that I need academic-wise and they have a great basketball tradition," Chase said. "Hopefully we can win an NCAA championship."

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