May 10, 2013
LONG BEACH - Long Beach State women's basketball has signed two more high school standouts to National Letters of Intent, head coach Jody Wynn announced Friday. Jewelyn Sawyer (Paramount, Calif.) and Raven Benton (Federal Way, Wash.) will join the 49ers for the 2013-14 season.
"We are absolutely thrilled to add two very special young women to our already fantastic freshman class," Wynn said. "Both Jewelyn and Raven fit beautifully, in that they are of great character, have family-centered values and work hard both in the classroom and on the basketball court. All five freshmen are tremendous competitors who know how to win, and their versatility fits well within our program."
Sawyer, a 6-foot guard, prepped at Gahr High School, where she will graduate in June. She recently led the Gladiators to an appearance in the 2013 CIF-Southern Section Division 3AAA championship game. As a senior, Sawyer averaged 18.1 points, 12.4 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 5.4 blocks and 4.2 steals per contest. She received first-team All-CIF, first-team All-San Gabriel Valley League and first-team Press-Telegram Dream Team honors, while she also won the L.A. Sports Council High School Achievement Award.
As a junior, Sawyer garnered first-team All-CIF accolades and also earned the CIF-SS Champion of Character Award. In her career, she was a four-time first-team all-league selection, two-time ESPN High School/Cal-High Sports All-State pick, and was also named to the Press-Telegram Dream Team all four years. She amassed 1,663 points, 1,326 rebounds, 300 assists, 368 blocks and 370 steals at Gahr HS.
"Jewelyn is a long, athletic guard who played all five positions with her high school team, which she led to the CIF Finals as a senior," Wynn said. "She is a versatile player and tremendous rebounder. Jewelyn's length and athleticism will allow her to defend multiple positions, and her ability to handle the ball and see the floor makes her a valuable asset at the guard spot."
Benton, a 5-foot-10 guard, is currently a senior at Federal Way High School in Washington. She led the state in scoring (26.6 ppg) for the 2012-13 season, while also averaging 12.0 rebounds and 4.0 steals per outing. Benton had nine games with 30 or more points. She was the most valuable player of the South Puget Sound League and was an Associated Press first-team all-state selection. In addition, Benton was tabbed the 2013 Girls' Basketball Player of the Year by the Federal Way Mirror and was named to The News Tribune and Seattle Times all-area teams.
During her career at Federal Way, Benton totaled 1,304 points and led the squad to two state appearances.
"Raven is a strong, powerful guard who can really score the ball," Wynn said. "She uses her strength and athleticism to get to the rim, and can also shoot the three. She's a physical guard who rebounds extremely well and impacts both ends of the floor."
Sawyer and Benton join a trio of early signees - Anna Kim, Madison Montgomery and Brianna Throop - to comprise the 49ers' 2013-14 recruiting class.
49er Women's Basketball
2013-14 Recruiting Class
Raven Benton, Fr., 5-10, Guard, Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way HS)
Anna Kim, Fr., 5-5, Point Guard, Fullerton, Calif. (Brea Olinda HS)
Madison Montgomery, Fr., 6-1, Forward, Englewood, Colo. (Highlands Ranch HS)
Jewelyn Sawyer, Fr., 6-0, Guard, Paramount, Calif. (Gahr HS)
Brianna Throop, Fr., 5-8, Point Guard, Highlands Ranch, Colo. (ThunderRidge HS)
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