Women’s Final Four 2023: 5 Best WNBA Prospects Left In March Madness
With the 2023 NCAA Women’s Tournament Final Four scheduled for this Friday, March 31, five of the best WNBA prospects left in March Madness are on the minds of many college basketball fans. For a reminder, the 2023 WNBA Draft is set for Monday, April 10 at Spring Studios New York. This will be the 28th draft in WNBA history.
5.) Angel Reese, 6-foot-3 forward | LSU
Sophomore forward Angel Reese is projected to be a late first-rounder to early second-round pick in the 2023 WNBA Draft. She recorded 28 double-doubles this season, breaking Sylvia Fowles’ school record of 27. Through 34 starts this season, the Maryland native is averaging career highs of 23.2 points, 15.7 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 1.8 steals, 1.6 blocks, and 33.6 minutes per game.
Angel Reese has the MOST DOUBLE-DOUBLES in a single season (SEC record) 📈 pic.twitter.com/u37VbVCcPE
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 27, 2023
Plus, she’s shooting career bests of 52.6% from the field and 70.8% beyond the arc. Reese led the SEC in points per game, points (790), total rebounds (533), 2-point field goals (277), free throws (233), win shares (12.6), offensive win shares (8.6), and defensive win shares (4.0).
She was selected 2022-23 SEC All-Defense and named to the All-SEC First Team. On another subject, No. 3 LSU will play either No. 1 Virginia Tech or No. 3 Ohio State this Friday, March 31 in the Final Four.
4.) Brea Beal, 6-foot-1 guard | South Carolina
Next, the Indiana Fever are projected to select Brea Beal at No. 7 in the 2023 WNBA Draft. The senior guard would be a solid defensive addition for the Fever. Through 35 starts this season, Beal is averaging 6.3 points, 2.7 assists, and a career-high 1.1 blocks per game.
Brea Beal wasn’t on mock drafts at the beginning of the season and now she’s predicted to be a top 10 pick!! 👏🏾. Keep being great 12!!
— Lamar 🤴🏾 (@TheDabKingNC) March 4, 2023
Additionally, she’s also shooting career bests of 42.7% from the floor and 38.7% outside the arc. Beal ranks 15th in the SEC in assists (93), 13th in blocks (37), and 12th in win shares (5.2). Not to mention, the Illinois native leads her conference in defensive box plus/minus (7.7).
However, a few WNBA mock drafts show Beal as a potential early third-round pick. At the moment, scouts are undecisive. Will South Carolina appear in another Final Four this Friday? The odds are in their favor.
3.) Jacy Sheldon, 5-foot-10 guard | Ohio State
Furthermore, senior guard Jacy Sheldon is expected to get selected No. 9 overall by the Seattle Storm in this year’s draft. Although the Ohio native only appeared in 12 games this season due to a lingering leg injury, she still has the skill and NCAA experience needed to succeed at the WNBA level. During her junior 2021-22 season, Sheldon averaged career highs of 19.7 points, 7.0 field goals, and 33.9 minutes per game.
JACY SHELDON GAME-WINNER 🔥
OHIO STATE IS HEADED BACK TO THE SWEET 16‼️ pic.twitter.com/d0ynZ6ywrB
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 20, 2023
In 2022, she was named to the All-Big Ten First Team and Big Ten All-Defensive Team. To add to these statistics, the guard shot a career-best 36.6% from 3-point range during her junior year. Through 12 starts in her senior season, she averaged 12.8 points, 3.5 boards, 3.7 assists, and 3.8 steals per contest. Some WNBA scouts are anticipating Sheldon to fall as low as an early second-round pick.
2.) Diamond Miller, 6-foot-3 guard | Maryland
As for Maryland standout Diamond Miller, a number of mock drafts show the senior guard from Somerset, New Jersey, being second overall by the Minnesota Lynx in the 2023 WNBA Draft. In 33 starts this season, the 22-year-old averaged career highs of 19.6 points, 6.5 rebounds, 2.9 dimes, 2.1 steals, 1.3 blocks, and 28.8 minutes.
First half: 4 PTS
Second half: 14 PTS
Diamond Miller FLIPPED THE SWITCH to lead Maryland to the Elite Eight 😤 pic.twitter.com/8c2rfaORIo
— ESPN (@espn) March 25, 2023
Miller finished third in the Big Ten in points (647), 11th in total rebounds (214), 19th in assists (97), third in steals (70), and fourth in blocks (43). The Maryland guard was then selected to the All-Big Ten Tournament.
Following her junior year, she was sidelined for multiple months after undergoing knee surgery. So, can No. 2 Maryland upset No. 1 South Carolina on Monday night to advance to the Final Four? Bettors don’t think so.
1.) Aliyah Boston, 6-foot-5 forward | South Carolina
Lastly, senior forward Aliyah Boston of South Carolina is the projected top overall pick in this year’s draft. At 6-foot-5, the four-time SEC Defensive Player of the Year, four-time SEC All-Defensive Team member, and two-time SEC Player of the Year is more than ready for the WNBA.
Last year, Boston and the Gamecocks won 64-49 over UConn to win the national championship. Boston won NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player and Naismith College Player of the Year as well. In the 2021-22 season, the top prospect averaged career highs of 16.8 points, 12.5 boards, 2.0 assists, 1.2 steals, and 2.4 blocks in 37 starts.
ALIYAH BOSTON IS A PROBLEM 😳 ✋ pic.twitter.com/VhmG0cJCFW
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 28, 2023
While her senior season has not been as dominant, two NCAA championships would look nice on any player’s résumé. And at least Boston led the SEC in offensive rating (134.1), defensive rating (68.8), and box plus/minus (19.2). Injuries aside, the No. 1 prospect has nothing left to prove.
She has averaged 12.9 points, 9.8 rebounds, 1.8 dimes, and 2.0 blocks in 35 starts this season. Moreover, will No. 1 South Carolina defeat No. 2 Maryland on Monday night to advance to the Final Four? The Gamecocks enter as 14.5-point favorites.
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