Women’s Basketball Signs Three

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Cal Poly women's basketball head coach Faith Mimnaugh and Athletics Director Don Oberhelman announced the signing of three student-athletes to National Letters of Intent to enroll at Cal Poly and participate in the sport of basketball.

Maddison Allen (6-3, post) from Biggera Waters, Australia, Taylor Spears (5-8, guard) from Brea, Calif. and Caroline Hughes (6-1, guard/forward) from Pleasanton, Calif. all signed letters of intent this past week. 

Allen comes to Cal Poly with international experience, playing this past year for the Queensland U20 team and earning a bronze medal where she led the tournament in blocked shots, second in rebounding, four in field goal percentage while averaging 9.1 points, 12 rebounds, four blocks and two assists per game.

In 2010 she competed with the Australian 19U and 17U teams traveling to Japan for games. Named to Australian All-Schools All-Star team and led the Queensland All-Schools Team to a third place finish in the all-schools championship. Earned MVP honors of the Queensland South D-League. 

In 2009 led the NSW All-Schools team to a second place finish at the Australian All-Schools Championships. Played for the Australian 17U team and U18 NSW Country team and led the U18 team to a second place finish at the Australian All-Schools Championships.

Head Coach Faith Mimnaugh on Maddison Allen: She is one of the top players in her age group in Australia.  Maddison narrowly missed out on an Australian Institute of Sport scholarship, and we are the lucky recipients of her outstanding play. A lefty post player that possesses great defensive skills, we expect Maddison to control the paint with her rebounding and shot blocking ability. Maddison's high school, John Paul College, just won its 3rd consecutive National Schools Tournament and Maddison was named the MVP. She can run all day and will be great in our up tempo game.

Maddison's father, Stuart, played in Newcastle at the same time that I was playing in Newcastle.  She inherits her parents' athletic abilities, but also her passion for excellence on the court and in the classroom.  Maddison will begin her studies to pursue a degree in Education with her sights set on teaching.

Hughes led the Dougherty Valley Wildcats to a 28-3 overall record and a 12-0 mark in league play last season. She led the team to a California ranking of 23rd and 118th in the nation.

As a sophomore the team posted a 26-4 overall record and 10-1 mark in league play. 

Her freshman year the team posted an 18-10 overall mark and 5-7 record in league play.

She is the 87th-ranked player in her position according to ESPN Hoopgurlz, and a three star recruit. As a junior she averaged 12.2 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists.

She is a two-time Diablo Foothill Athletic League first-team selection, she was also an All-East Bay second team pick and helped the Wildcats win the NCS Division II title.

Head Coach Faith Mimnaugh on Caroline Hughes: She is a multi-positional player.  Her length and anticipation skills will enable her to play guard and forward for us.  Her talented Dougherty Valley high school team went 28-3 last season.  She loves to press and has great ability to do so.  She is a quick decision maker, much like current player Kayla Griffin.  She prides herself on rebounding and doing the little things to help her team win.  She is what I call a "glue player".  She makes everything fit together with her unselfish play.  A Political Science major, Caroline may one day be ruling a different court with her Cal Poly degree.

Spears led the Brea Olinda Wildcats to a 31-2 overall record last year and posed a 12-0 mark in league play when she averaged 8.5 points per game. She is listed as a three star recruit and is ranked 59th  by ESPN Hoopgurlz.

Comments on Spears by ESPN: Nike Nationals-July 10: Tough physical player with nice range on her jumper. She has a quick release and understands how to create space to get her shot off. 

Nike Skills-May '10: Guard with lots of tools and potential….. She's still a strong and attacking guard who has a lot of dominant moments on the floor. Her ability to score in traffic is solid …. Defensively, when she puts her mind to it, she can dig in and get a stop on almost any match up…..

Head Coach Faith Mimnaugh on Taylor Spears:  Taylor is the 15th ranked player in California (194 nationally ranked player in the country according to Blue Star Scouting).  She is an exciting slashing guard that will be an impact player.  She is strong and smart and has spent her high school career at two nationally ranked high school programs: Brea Olinda and Mater Dei.  Last season, Brea Olinda was ranked 4th nationally with a 31-2 record.  In a word, she is a winner.  We expect great things from Taylor as soon as she steps on campus. An engineering major, Taylor will excel in the classroom and on the court.  She is following in the footsteps of her father, Rafael Spears who played football for Cal Poly and majored in engineering.