ENGLEWOOD, Tenn. — Sometimes making a college choice is hard, especially when athletics are involved. In the case of Elizabeth Masengil, that wasn't the case.
The McMinn Central senior signed Wednesday to continue her basketball career at the University of Tennessee at Martin. The Lady Skyhawks compete in the Ohio Valley Conference and have advanced to the NCAA Division I tournament the past two seasons.
Masengil, a 5-foot-11 wing, was the Class AA Miss Basketball award winner after averaging 24.3 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.2 steals and 1.7 assists per game last season for the Chargerettes, who lost in the state quarterfinals.
"One of the things that drew me to the school was that it was so similar to my hometown," Masengil said. "They started recruiting me my freshman year, and during AAU they tried to come to all of my games no matter what state we were in. I visited the campus, and as soon as I stepped foot on campus I felt it was the right place to be."
Her other interest came from Middle Tennessee State, UT-Chattanooga, Carson-Newman and some smaller colleges, but it was a strong connection from the beginning between her and Lady Skyhawks coach Kevin McMillan.
"She was this past year's Class AA Miss Basketball for a reason, and we are excited she is joining us," McMillan said in a UTM release. "She has the ability to play multiple positions from the 1 to the 4. She is a prolific scorer and will fit well in what we do.
"I have watched her since she was a freshman, and what stands out to me more than anything is her character and her competitiveness. She is a fierce competitor and one of the most humble young ladies you will ever meet. Fans will love how hard she plays, how she approaches the game, and love her spirit."
Lady Mocs add guard
Point guard Chelsey Shumpert became the UTC Lady Mocs' sixth signee Thursday.
Her five future classmates all got their paperwork in Wednesday before the Lady Mocs left for their game at Belmont -- an easy 84-54 win -- but because of a late signing ceremony, the high-scoring Shumpert wasn't official until Thursday.
At Paducah Tilghman (Ky.) High School last season, Shumpert averaged 25.4 points per game.
Upshaw in MTSU group
Baylor's Reggie Upshaw was one of four men's basketball signees announced Thursday by Middle Tennessee. Injured during this football season, he averaged 18 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two blocks a game in the 2011-12 season.
"Reggie is an outstanding basketball player," MTSU coach Kermit Davis said in a school release. "He is extremely talented, athletic and really skilled. He can play the 2, 3 or stretch 4. He's going to strictly concentrate on basketball for the next four years, and his upside is tremendous."