Meet the team: 2022-2023 womens basketball team


Kentucky Wildcats guard Robyn Benton (1) passes the ball during the UK vs. Auburn womens basketball game on Sunday, Feb. 27, 2022, at Memorial Coliseum in Lexington, Kentucky. UK won 90-62. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Jack Spurgeon, Reporter

It’s just about basketball time once again in the bluegrass, with the womens basketball team looking to reinvent itself. This year’s squad is fresh off a 19-12 season that was capped off with the first SEC Championship in 40 years before the team was eliminated in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against Princton.

The Wildcats come into the new season losing most of last season’s team, including one of the programs’ most decorated players, Rhyne Howard, who went first overall in last year’s WNBA Draft. To make up for the losses, head coach Kyra Elzy put a lot of emphasis on both recruiting and the transfer portal, leading to a mostly new program with only five returning players out of 15 total.

Meet the team:

Tionna Herron – 0

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Desoto, Texas

Position: Center

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

-12 PPG

-8 RBS

-3 BLK

About: Coming into Lexington as a four-star prospect, ranking as high as the 11th best post and 69th overall player in the class of 2022, Herron looks to be an immediate difference maker for the Wildcats down low as she brings height and athleticism to the team. Herron will hope to make an impact on both sides of the floor, leading her high school to two state championships, earning District 11-6A Tri-MVP and all-district honors.

Fun Fact: Herron was nicknamed “Tree” in high school due to her tremendous size and athletic ability.

Robyn Benton – 1

Year: Graduate student

Hometown: Conyers, Georgia

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats:

-8.8 PPG

-2.5 RPG

-1.5 APG

About: Returning as a 5th-year senior, Benton looks for one more go-around in search of topping last year’s historic season that came to an abrupt end. Benton’s scrappy defense and ability to spread the floor gives the Wildcat’s a huge advantage on both sides of the floor. Benton is one of five returning players.

Fun Fact: Benton has two siblings, one being Inky Johnson, who played football at the University of Tennessee.

Saniah Tyler – 2

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Florissant, Missouri

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

– 12.2 PPG

-4.2 APG

-2.6 STL

About: Coming to the bluegrass as a four-star prospect, Tyler was ranked as the 22nd best point guard in the class of 2022. A floor general with a tough competitive spirit, she gives the Wildcats another well-rounded point guard to control the offense.

Fun Fact: Tyler was named the St. Louis Post Dispatch All-Metro Player of the Year as a senior.

Kennedy Cambridge – 3

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

-14.8 PPG

-4.6 RPG

-3.6 STL

About: Coming into Lexington as a four-star prospect, Cambridge was ranked the 36th best guard in the class of 2022, also being ranked as the 52nd best overall player in the class. She is an athletic combo guard that can score the ball well and create opportunities for herself and her teammates. Cambridge was a finalist for the Tennessee Miss Basketball award in 2022.

Fun Fact: She has three siblings – one older sister and two brothers – who are all Division 1 athletes. Her older sister is playing basketball at Vanderbilt, and her brothers are playing basketball at Arizona State.

Eniya Russell – 4

Year: Junior

Hometown: Baltimore, Maryland

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (South Carolina):

-2.5 PPG

-1.1 RPG

About: Russell is an athletic guard with great size and ability to score at all three levels. Her presence can spread the floor offensively for the Cats, with her also shooting an impressive 42% from behind the arc as a Gamecock her sophomore season.

Fun Fact: Russell was originally recruited to Kentucky by Kyra Elzy out of high school, but she picked South Carolina instead.

Blair Green – 5

Year: Graduate student

Hometown: Harlan County, Kentucky

Position: Guard

2020-2021 Stats (Junior Season):

-6.0 PPG

-1.6 RPG

-1.0 APG

About: Redshirting last season due to ruptured Achilles, Green seeks a comeback season with the Cats. Hitting 33% of her shots behind the arc her junior season, she looks to be both a threat to opponents from downtown this season as well as a veteran leader for the squad.

Fun Fact: Green was a 2018 Naismith High School All-American honorable mention after scoring 93 points in three games to lead Harlan County to the KHSAA State Tournament.

Jada Walker – 11

Year: Sophomore

Hometown: Richmond, Virginia

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats:

-10.4 PPG

– 3.0 RPG

-2.1 APG

About: An energetic and talented guard, Walker is expected to add immediate impact and depth for the Cats roster. A pronounced scorer and solid defender, she looks to continue her impact on both sides of the floor. Walker was second on the team in steals last season with 47, while she was third in assists with 64.

Fun Fact: Walker was named to the All-SEC Freshman Team last season.

Ajae Petty – 13

Year: Junior

Hometown: Baltimore, Maryland

Position: Forward

2021-2022 Stats (LSU):

– 17 PTS

-18 RBS

-2 BLK

About: Looking to provide the Cats with depth and athleticism down low, Petty is a talented post player and is skilled on both sides of the floor.

Fun Fact: Her first name is pronounced like “Asia.”

Amiya Jenkins – 20

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Lexington, Kentucky

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

-20.6 PPG

-5.1 RPG

-4.1 STL

About: Coming into Lexington as a four-star prospect, Jenkins looks to make an immediate impact for the Cats offensively. Ranked as the 31st best guard and fourth overall in the class of 2022, Jenkins is a proficient scorer, racking up over 2,000 career points in high school and leading her team to three straight KHSAA Eighth-Region championships.

Fun Fact: She was named the 2022 Miss Kentucky Basketball.

Nyah Leveretter – 21

Year: Junior

Hometown: Blythwood, South Carolina

Position: Forward

2021-2022 Stats:

-2.2 PPG

-2.6 RPG

About: A tall, strong and athletic forward that plays well in the frontcourt, Leveretter looks to add strength and depth for the Cats after developing last season with the team. With her size, Leverretter is expected to be a problem for opponents on the offensive glass, grabbing five rebounds in the UK’s SEC Tournament opener against Mississippi State last year.

Fun Fact: Leveretter was a star volleyball player in high school, racking up over 700 career kills, 577 career blocks and 53 aces over the span of her four-year career.

Maddie Scherr – 22

Year: Junior

Hometown: Lexington, Kentucky

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (Oregon):

– 3.7 PPG

-2.6 APG

-2.9 RPG

About: An offensive threat, Scherr looks to improve upon her two seasons at Oregon this upcoming season. While at Oregon, Scherr was an efficient 32.6% behind the arc, stretching the floor for the offense. She brings leadership and experience to the guard position, even if the experience wasn’t gained in Lexington.

Fun Fact: Scherr was named Miss Kentucky Basketball in 2019.

Cassidy Rowe – 23

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Virgie, Kentucky

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

-16.1 PPG

-3.8 RPG

About: A high-energy athlete that fought through injuries in high school, Rowe looks to prove herself as a solid leader at the guard position. She is a threat on the offensive side of the floor, shooting at an effective 46% from within the arc and 40% beyond the arc in high school.

Fun Fact: Rowe committed to Kentucky as a freshman in high school.

Zennia Thomas – 24

Year: Freshman

Hometown: Lyndhurst, Ohio

Position: Forward

2021-2022 Stats (High School Senior):

-30.6 PPG

-14.5 RPG

About: A scoring machine with explosive athleticism and elite versatility, Thomas gives the Cats depth at the forward position and is a threat on the offensive side of the floor, recording back-to-back double-doubles in December for Warrensville Heights.

Fun Fact: She was named Lake Erie League Player of Year and District Player of the Year in 2022.

Adebola Adeyeye – 25

Year: Graduate student

Hometown: Brampton, Ontario

Position: Forward

2021-2022 Stats (Buffalo):

-6.1 PPG

-6.5 RPG

About: An energetic athlete that fits Kentucky’s system well, Adeyeye is dominant on the glass, and her athleticism allows her to run both sides of the floor. Transferring from Buffalo, Adeyeye helped the Bulls to win the 2022 MAC Championship and make an NCAA Tournament appearance.

Fun Fact: Her favorite basketball player is Draymond Green.

Emma King – 34

Year: Senior

Hometown: Stanford, Kentucky

Position: Guard

2021-2022 Stats:

-0.2 PPG

-1.2 RPG

About: Entering her senior year at Kentucky, King looks to make a larger impact in Lexington after seeing growing minutes last season. She played in 26 games along with two starts, including a career-high 33 minutes last season against LSU, finishing with seven points and three rebounds.

Fun Fact: King ended her high school career with over 2,500 career points and 750 rebounds.