(L-R): Bridgette Rettstatt, Apilyn Bonny and Ashtyn Baker
During the opening week of the 2016-17 season, Liberty Women's Basketball Head Coach Carey Green announced that Ashtyn Baker, Apilyn Bonny and Bridgette Rettstatt have signed national letters of intent to attend Liberty University for the 2017-18 academic year.
"The journey begins with three talented young players who have expressed a genuine interest to grow in their spiritual life as they play a game they love here at Liberty," stated Green. "Each player brings a unique high level of basketball skills. They each have a great opportunity to fit into the special needs of our team."
Ashtyn Baker (G, 5-6, Nesbit, Miss.) Baker has racked up an impressive list of team and individual accomplishments, entering her senior season at Northpoint Christian School. The point guard has totaled 1,521 points, 648 assists and 550 rebounds, helping the Trojans go 110-21 during her four years of varsity competition.
Last season, Baker averaged 16 points, six assists, five rebounds and five steals per contest while leading Northpoint Christian to a 31-2 season and the Tennessee Division II-A state championship. Baker was named MVP of the state tournament and was a finalist for the Tennessee Sports Writers Division II-A Miss Basketball award.
Ranked No. 49 among point guards in the Class of 2017 by ESPNW HoopGurlz, Baker chose Liberty over Cincinnati, Dayton, Princeton and UALR among others. "When I first walked on campus at Liberty, I knew it was where God wanted me to be," Baker explained.
What They're Saying about Ashtyn Baker "A team's success usually begins with a quick start and the speed of a floor general. Ashtyn Baker fits that need, while demonstrating an insatiable work ethic and a high basketball IQ. She makes everyone better around her. Her ability to coordinate the energy and tempo of a game has led her team to state playoffs and a state championship as well as her being named MVP of the state tournament. Ashtyn is very competitive yet has a sweet spirit and concern for others. She has the heart of a lion for the Lord and serving others. We are certainly excited to have her competiveness and leadership join our Liberty family." Carey Green, Liberty Head Women's Basketball Coach
"The Northpoint coaching staff feels Liberty University is getting the total package in Ashtyn Baker. She plays with extreme speed and control, displaying intensity and a relentless attack on the floor. Ashtyn's speed and perseverance make her a top-notch contender against any opponent. The most important aspect she will bring to Liberty University is her strong Christian leadership and her love and sensitivity for other people. This staff considers Ashtyn a diamond in the rough!" Barry Gray, Northpoint Christian School Varsity Girls' Basketball Coach
"I really enjoyed coaching Ashtyn. She is a quality young lady from a great and supportive family. She worked hard every day to get better as a player and do what was best for the team. Ashtyn is the most intense competitive person I have ever coached. I know she will do well in life as well as basketball." Don Williams, Team Memphis Elite Head Basketball Coach
Apilyn Bonny (F/C, 6-5, Bronx, N.Y.) Standing 6-5, Bonny is the tallest player the Lady Flames have signed since 2010. The senior at Grand Street Campus High School in Brooklyn, N.Y., has used her height to great effect on the basketball court. As a sophomore, she averaged 14.5 ppg and a league-best 20.3 rpg. On the AAU circuit, Bonny was part of the first Exodus team to reach Nike Nationals.
Bonny, who was also considering Kansas State and La Salle, said, "I tell myself every day that I'll be attending Liberty University in the fall of 2017, and I smile from ear to ear every time. As the world's largest Christian university, full of great people and amazing coaches and teammates, there's no place I'd rather be. I'm truly blessed."
What They're Saying about Apilyn Bonny "Apilyn Bonny brings another unique piece of the puzzle for success to Liberty. She brings a physical presence along with a soft finishing touch. Her size, strength and power will have an immediate impact of establishing our inside game. We were first impressed with her agility and athleticism while playing on a very talented NYC Nike Elite AAU program. Apilyn competed against some of the best players in the USA, which gave her an invaluable experience during the summer. Playing in the highly respected NYC league will continue to develop her inside game. We really believe we have an unpolished diamond in Apilyn. We stole a good one. She has a great personality and exemplifies a gentle giant, yet she can dominate the game. Her Christian values align alongside that of our Liberty culture. Everyone will be impressed with Apilyn in more ways than one." Carey Green, Liberty Head Women's Basketball Coach
"Apilyn's commitment to family, religion and education has fueled her commitment to excellence." Corey McFarlane, Grand Street Campus Varsity Girls' Basketball Coach
Bridgette Rettstatt (G/F, 6-2, Galena, Ohio) The younger sister of current Liberty senior Audrey Rettstatt, Bridgette Rettstatt was named Ohio Division III Co-State Player of the Year as a junior at Worthington Christian High School. The 6-2 wing player averaged 23.4 ppg, 10.1 rpg, 3.7 apg and 3.5 spg, while shooting 54 percent from the field, 32 percent from three-point range and 78 percent from the foul line.
Rettstatt, who has totaled 1,208 points and 617 rebounds entering her senior season, is also a standout performer in soccer and track & field. She recently totaled 23 goals and 14 assists during her senior soccer season. In track, Rettstatt is a two-time all-state high jumper with a personal best of 5-7.
Rettstatt chose Liberty over Akron, Lafayette, Saint Francis (Pa.) and Xavier, stating, "It's an honor to sign with Liberty University. It's been my dream ever since I found out about the Snowflex, which sadly, I know I will not be using. Over the years my love for Liberty has grown deeper than just the Snowflex, as I have experienced the beautiful campus and learned about all that LU has to offer. Through my sister's basketball career, I have had the opportunity to meet the players and coaches, and I look forward to being part of this strong Lady Flames tradition. I am extremely excited to see how God will use me in these next four years on and off the court."
What They're Saying about Bridgette Rettstatt "Bridgette Rettstatt brings an aggressive, complete game to the wing position. She can knock down the three-point shot as well as drive and post up. Her height, length and ball handling skills are great attributes to involve other teammates in our overall schemes. She is an extremely versatile player able to defend and have a high major impact rebounding. She also has a competitive spirit that complements a burning desire to win. Bridgette exhibits a high basketball IQ. She has demonstrated a strong commitment to Christian character development throughout the recruiting process while competing at Worthington Christian, where her sister, current Lady Flame Audrey, played as well." Carey Green, Liberty Head Women's Basketball Coach
"Through her discipline, dedication and love for the game, Bridgette has spent countless hours in the gym developing into the player she is today. As a result, she has earned the respect of her coaches and teammates. She has set the bar for the players of tomorrow." Tammi Evans, Worthington Christian High School Varsity Girls' Basketball Coach
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