Two USC signees are McDonald's All-Americans

January 30, 2014 

South Carolina head women's basketball coach Dawn Staley was on hand as Dutch Fork High School retired Alaina Coates number during a ceremony at half time of the Dutch Fork Irmo girls game on Tuesday night. Coates now stars for USC as a freshman.

GERRY MELENDEZ — gmelendez@thestate.com Buy Photo

South Carolina Class of 2014 signees Bianca Cuevas (Bronx, N.Y./Nazareth Regional) and Jatarie White (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day) earned McDonald’s All-America honors Wednesday night and will play in the 13th edition of the game on April 2 at Chicago’s United Center. Their selection gives the Gamecocks a total of four McDonald’s All-Americans all-time, including current freshman Alaina Coates.

“We’re so happy for Bianca and Jatarie with this announcement,” coach Dawn Staley said. “They’ll join Alaina next year to give us three McDonald’s All-Americans, which has never happened here. It’s great for these players and great for raising the profile of our program every time one of our signees is recognized on this level.”

Cuevas is rated the No. 8 point guard in the class and earned a five-star rating from ESPN. Playing on back-to-back state championship teams, she has earned all-state honors the last three seasons. Nazareth Regional is among the top teams in New York with a 15-4 record, and Cuevas leads the offense, averaging 24.1 points and 4.1 assists.

White is the top post player in the class and the No. 7 recruit overall, according to ESPN. She is a three-time all-state selection and earned North Carolina Player of the Year honors from the Associated Press and state Gatorade Player of the Year status in 2013. White has been part of Providence Day’s last three state championships, averaging at least 11 points and eight rebounds in each of those seasons. This season, the Chargers are 20-3 with White leading the way with 22.2 points, 9.0 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game.

Tennessee joins the Gamecocks as the only SEC teams with signees among the 24 players selected, combining to give the SEC four more entries next season.

No Midlands or South Carolina players made the cut to play in the boys game.

The McDonald’s All-American Games will be nationally televised from the United Center in Chicago on April 2.

Heathwood Hall’s A’ja Wilson, a USC recruit who is taking her official visit to USC this weekend, will play with White and Cuevas in Chicago. Wilson, the top-ranked female senior basketball player in the nation, is the only player selected in the girls game who has yet to commit to a college.

The 6-foot-5 forward is averaging 36.1 points, 15.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 3.2 steals and 5.0 blocks a game for the 15-3 Highlanders, who have one last shot at winning a SCISA championship during Wilson’s career.

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