FGCU Women's Basketball Adds Three Student-Athletes
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
FORT MYERS, Fla. – Three of the top high school players in the state of Florida have signed National Letters of Intent to play women’s basketball at Florida Gulf Coast University beginning this fall. Guard/forward Princess Stewart from Deerfield Beach High School, forward Candace Carreras from Boca Raton Pope John Paul II and forward Alexandra Axam from Lantana Santaluces High School all signed to play for the Eagles in 2005-06. All three players led their teams into the state tournament and received all-state accolades, with a cumulative record of 71-15 among the three schools. They are the first signees for FGCU this off-season. “We are excited about these freshmen and what they bring to our program,” said Eagles head coach Karl Smesko, who has posted a 69-18 record in three years at FGCU. “The competitiveness they bring will help our team and we expect all three to compete for playing time right away.” The 5-foot-7 Stewart led Deerfield Beach to back-to-back Class 6A state championships as a sophomore and junior and to a 26-4 record and state runner-up finish as a senior. A wing player, Stewart was named to the Class 6A All-State first team after averaging 16 points, seven rebounds, five steals and three assists per game last year. Axam played on a Santaluces High School team that posted a 23-4 record and advanced to the Class 6A Region 2 semifinals. The 5-foot-9 Axam earned Class 6A All-State first team honors after averaging 16 points, seven rebounds and four assists per game as a senior. She was selected as the South Florida Sun-Sentinel's Class 6A-5A-4A Player of the Year. A 5-foot-9 wing player, Carreras led Boca Raton Pope John Paul II to the Region 3 semifinals in Class 3A and a 23-4 record as a senior. A second-team Class 3A All-State selection, she averaged 18 points, 10 rebounds and four assists per game this year. FGCU finished the 2004-05 campaign with a 21-9 record and return four players who started at least eight games.