Kateri Stone's skills on the basketball court are only rivaled by her ability in the classroom.
She found a college home to satisfy both.
The Montini senior, a two-time Daily Herald All-Area selection and two-time state champion, committed this week to Colgate. Stone, a Naperville resident, chose Colgate over fellow prestigious academic institutions Columbia and Cornell, as well as Missouri-Kansas City.
"She didn't want to sacrifice academics for the basketball," Montini coach Jason Nichols said. "I think she made a pretty good choice for both."
Stone averaged 11.3 points and 3.7 rebounds, and hit 88 3-pointers for Montini last season. She was named second team All-State by the Associated Press.
Just as significant, Stone carries a 4.2 grade-point average at Montini and scored a 26 on her ACT. She plans to go pre-med at Colgate. Stone recently made a visit to the campus located in Hamilton, an hour from Syracuse in upstate New York.
"It came down to a bunch of things," Stone said. "I looked for a great academic school, and Colgate has a great tradition. I loved the team chemistry and the atmosphere is great. Honestly I've always loved the east coast and the campus was beautiful. I just fell in love with it."
Colgate coach Nicci Hays Fort, a former assistant at DePaul under Doug Bruno, is going into her third season. Stone would be the second Illinois native on Colgate's roster; Randyll Butler, from Marist, will be a sophomore guard this fall.
Stone's ability to hit the 3-point shot is a skill that should translate well to the next level.
"She's a kid who can stretch defenses and open up the floor for penetrating guards," Nichols said. "She's got a lot better over the last couple years, and she works at it really hard. She has an opportunity to be pretty darn good."
Stone is the third Montini senior to make recent college commitments, joining Sara Ross (IUPUI) and Kelly Karlis (Ohio).
Now she can look forward to her senior season. Montini should be among the favorites in Class 3A, after falling short of its bid for a four-peat last spring. Stone was slowed by an ankle sprain at state, and Montini was upset by Vernon Hills in the Class 3A semifinals in taking third.
"Let me tell you, it's the best thing to be done with this whole process," Stone said. "I'm so excited for this season."
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