Roman Augustoviz spends Minnesota's winters covering college hockey, specifically the Gophers, and other University of Minnesota sports. During the summer, he writes about the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx, with a dose of U sports sprinkled in. Follow him on Twitter @RomanStrib.

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Lynx release training camp roster, which includes five free agent rookies

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under Lynx Updated: April 27, 2012 - 2:39 PM

The Lynx on Friday released their training camp roster. It has 18 names on it, some totally unfamiliar.

The defending WNBA champions will have their first practice of this season on Sunday afternoon at the practice facility at Target Center. But missing will be all five starters from last year's team plus 6-5 forward Amber Harris. All will be reporting late because of overseas commitments.

To have enough bodies to practice, the Lynx have five free agents who they have signed -- or will sign. All are rookies, not expected to make the team. They are sometimes called training camp invitees. More on them later.

At camp will be three key reserves, guards Candice Wiggins and Monica Wright and center Jessica Adair.

Also there will be veteran guard Erin Thorn, who the Lynx signed as a free agent in the offseason, and three of the six players the Lynx took in the WNBA draft earlier this month: Devereaux Peters, Julie Wojta and Kayla Standish.

Thorn has played in the WNBA for eight seasons, first with New York and more recently with Chicago. She has averaged 5.1 points per game in her career and has shot 37.3 percent from three-point range.

The training camp invitees may not be well known names, but there is talent there. Who knows the Lynx might find a player among them for the future? One is one of the top young players in Spain, two were the college players of the year in their conference, and two led their Big Ten teams in scoring.

Here is a look at free agent rookies:

* Querald Casas is s 5-11 forward who played for Spain in the 2011 FIBA under-19 World Championships. She averaged 10 points and 3.6 rebounds and shot 37.5 percent on threes. She played for Mann Filter in the Spain this past season, averaging 9.5 points and 3.4 rebounds.

* Jasmine Lee is a 6-2 forward or center. She played for the University of Memphis the past two seasons after transferring from Georgia and sitting out a season. Lee averaging 15.2 points and 10.3 rebounds for the Tigers as a senior and was the player of the year in Conference-USA. Melissa McFerrin, her coach, was an assistant with the Gophers when Lindsay Whalen played at the U.

* Tavelyn James is a 5-7 guard from Eastern Michigan. She averaged 23.8 points as a senior -- which was the third highest average in the country -- and was the Mid-Atlantic Conference player of the year. James finished as the second-leading scorer in Eagles' team history with 2,470 points. She averaged 19.1 points per game for her career.

James received the Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award, presented annually to the nation's most outstanding NCAA Division I female basketball player who is 5-foot-8 tall or under.

Fourteen of the last 17 award winners since 1997 have been drafted -- James was expected to be but wasn't -- and seven are currently on WNBA rosters, including last season's No. 3 draft pick Courtney Vandersloot. who is playing for Chicago.

* Porsche Poole is a 5-8 guard who led Michigan State in scoring, averaging 13.4 points. Poole was an all-Big Ten second team pick. She averaged 3.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists.

* Brittany Rayburn is a 6-foot guard from Purdue. She led the Boilermakers in scoring last season when she averaged 14.8 points. She finished her career in the top 10 in school history in points, three-pointers and free throws made.

Peters, Standish and Rayburn are still not signed yet, but are expected to before training camp begins so they can participate.

 No   Player                              Pos         Ht         College                  Yrs

1     Jessica Adair                    C            6-4       Geo Wash '09       2

33   Seimone Augustus          G            6-0        LSU '06                 6

32   Rebekkah Brunson          F            6-2        Georgetown '04   8

9     Queralt Casas                   F            5-11      Spain                     R

6     Amber Harris                     F            6-5         Xavier '11               1

24  Tavelyn James                  G             5-7         E. Michigan ‘12     R

3     Jasmine Lee                    F/C         6-2         Memphis ‘12          R

8     Taj McWilliams-Franklin F/C         6-2         St. Edward's '93    13

23    Maya Moore                     F             6-0         Connecticut '11     1

14    Devereaux Peters          F             6-2          Notre Dame ‘12    R

4      Porsche Poole               G             5-8          Michigan St ‘12      R

25    Brittany Rayburn            G             6-0           Purdue ‘12             R

12    Kayla Standish               F             6-2           Gonzaga ‘12          R

5      Erin Thorn                       G            5-9            BYU  ‘03                 9

13    Lindsay Whalen            G            5-9             Minnesota '04       8

11    Candice Wiggins          G           5-11            Stanford '08          4

2      Julie Wojta                     G/F         6-0         Wis-Green Bay ‘12   R

22    Monica Wright               G/F       5-10            Virginia '10              2

Head Coach: Cheryl Reeve (La Salle)

Assistant Coaches: Jim Petersen (Minnesota), Shelley Patterson (Washington State)

Athletic Trainers: Chuck Barta (Wisconsin-La Crosse), Keith Uzpen (Minnesota State, Mankato)

 

 

 

 

 

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