ND Women’s Basketball: Sacramento Bound
Jay Fitzpatrick | Thursday, April 10, 2008
Notre Dame guard Charel Allen was taken 43rd overall in Wednesday’s 2008 WNBA Draft by the Sacramento Monarchs.
Allen said she was still unsure of whether she would be drafted going into the event.
“My coaches gave me confidence that I would [get drafted], but I was still nervous watching it,” she said in a phone interview Wednesday.
The 5-foot-11 guard is the seventh Irish player drafted in the last eight years, the most recent of which was in 2006 when guard Megan Duffy went to Minnesota in the third round.
Allen was taken with the last overall pick in the draft that was a compensatory selection for Sacramento after their third round selection last season was voided for selecting an ineligible player – Meg Bulger from West Virginia.
Allen said she was nervous as the draft wore on but relieved when she finally heard her name called.
She attended the draft workout in Tampa during the Final Four earlier this week to show off her skills.
The Monarchs used their first round pick on Maryland center Laura Harper (10th overall) and took both Texas A&M guard A’Quonesia Franklin (38th overall) and UTEP center Izabela Piekarska (40th overall) in the third round.
Allen was a first team All-Big East player in both her junior and senior seasons. This season, Allen lead the Irish in points per game (15.1), minutes per game (30.2) and 3-point shooting percentage with a minimum of 30 shots (38.1 percent). She also grabbed 5.6 boards per game and had 84 assists compared to only 68 turnovers.
This past season, she guided Notre Dame to a No. 15/13 ranking and a Sweet 16 berth before falling to Tennessee 74-64.
The Monessen, Penn., native had the biggest night of her career in her penultimate game, when she scored a career-high 35 points in Notre Dame’s 79-75 overtime win over Oklahoma in the second round of this year’s NCAA Tournament.
Allen was the first Irish player to notch over 1,500 points, 500 rebounds, 200 assists and 200 steals. She finished her Notre Dame career in the top 10 of 10 different categories, including eighth in scoring with 1,566.
The Los Angeles Sparks fulfilled most people’s expectations by taking two-time national player of the year Candace Parker, a forward from Tennessee, with the first overall pick. Parker led the Lady Vols to back-to-back national championships and was the Most Outstanding Player both years.