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Cal Poly Signs Ellis, Hunter to National Letters of Intent

Cal Poly Signs Ellis, Hunter to National Letters of Intent

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — The Cal Poly women's basketball program has signed 
Abbey Ellis (Our Lady of Mercy College / Yallambie, Australia) and Leslie Hunter (Chaminade College Prep / West Hills, CA) to National Letters of Intent.

Mustang head coach Faith Mimnaugh announced the incoming student-athletes during the NCAA's early signing period.

Ellis, a 5-foot-8 point guard, has played 25 games since 2017 in the Australian Championships, including most recently averaging 5.0 points through four games in 2018 at the Victoria senior-level tournament.

"Abbey is one of the top guards in Victoria, Australia," Mimnaugh said. "She has great ability to score from the 3 and attacks well. She is a fierce competitor with a great motor."

Hailing from a suburb of Melbourne, Ellis has an extensive career throughout the Australian Youth National system, as she played at the U-18 level for Vic Metro after helping the team win the 2016 U-16 Australian Junior Championships crown.

Ellis was Victoria's second-leading scorer in the 2016 final, posting 10 points as Vic Metro topped NSW Metro 63-38 for the title, finishing the tournament unbeaten.

Additionally, Ellis has helped lead Our Lady of Mercy in Heidelberg, coached by Christopher Spencer, to back-to-back Girls Sport Victoria championships, each in 6-0 fashion, in 2017 & 2018.

"Her decision-making and playmaking skills are exceptional," Mimnaugh added of Ellis, "and she will be able to help our guard play immediately."

Ellis, who also has competed in netball at OLMC, will major in Child Development at Cal Poly.

Hunter, meanwhile, earned not only L.A. Daily News All-Area First Team accolades in 2018, but was also selected for All-State Third Team honors by Cal-Hi Sports following her junior season.

A 5-6 guard, Hunter averaged 12.7 points, 3.0 steals and 2.0 assists in 2017-18 as Chaminade advanced to the overall CIF State Division 1 Tournament, after almost winning the Southern Section D1 title (falling by only one point in the final).

"Leslie possesses similar speed to Dye Stahley," Mimnaugh commented, referencing the Mustangs' senior point guard who ranked fourth in the Big West in steals as a junior.

"A combo guard, she can direct play or take over a scoring role seamlessly. Sometimes when a player is gifted going to the basket, she may have not developed her 3 game to the same level. Leslie can do either."

Combined for her three varsity seasons, Hunter has helped Chaminade go 69-25 total, including 18-6 in Mission play.

Hunter also averaged 6.0 points as a sophomore when the Eagles, coached by Kelli DiMuro, qualified for the second round of the Division 2 state playoffs.

As a varsity-level freshman, Hunter played 30 games for an Eagle squad that won the State Championship in Sacramento, ultimately finishing ranked No. 9 in the nation in the Xcellent 25.

"Her defensive quickness can disrupt offenses, which makes her a perfect fit for what we like to do as a program," Mimnaugh added regarding Hunter, who has also played travel ball for the Wil2Win club out of Los Angeles.

Mission League runner-ups for 2018, the Eagles finished the year 21-9 altogether (6-2 in league play), ranked No. 25 across the state by MaxPreps, with Hunter also being chosen to the All-CIF Division 1 First Team by the Southern California Interscholastic Basketball Coaches Association.

Hunter will major in Psychology at Cal Poly, minoring in Biology.