MINNEAPOLIS – Minnesota women’s basketball head coach Lindsay Whalen announced Friday that Daja (DAY-zha) Woodard will join the program this fall as a junior college transfer. Woodard is a 6’3 forward who played at Jones County Community College in Ellisville, Miss., last year.

A native of Mobile, Ala., Woodard played in 21 games this past year for Jones College with 18 starts, averaging 9.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.7 blocks and 1.2 steals per contest as she helped lead the Bobcats to the Region 23 Tournament championship and a spot in the NJCAA Division I National Tournament. Woodard had 11 games with at least 10 points, nine contests with 10 or more rebounds and eight double-doubles on the season.

“Daja brings us an element of athleticism that I think will excite Gopher fans,” Whalen said. “Her versatility to be able to play inside, as well as the perimeter, will add great depth to our post group.”

Woodard had a stretch of three straight double-doubles in early February that helped her earn Mississippi Association of Community & Junior Colleges (MACJC) Player of the Week honors. Woodard’s top scoring performance came on Feb. 27 when she scored 18 points against East Mississippi, while she recorded a season-high 21 rebounds versus Southwest Mississippi on Feb. 13.

Prior to Jones College, Woodard spent her freshman season at Pensacola State College where she nearly averaged a double-double with 14.8 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per contest while shooting 48 percent from the floor. She scored in double figures in 14 games and had six double-doubles, including a season-high 28 points and 15 boards against Eastern Florida State.

Woodard becomes the third transfer into the Golden Gopher program since the end of the season after Kayla Mershon was announced Wednesday and Laura Bagwell Katalinich was added last month. The trio joins a three-member freshman class that is scheduled to be on campus this fall.

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