Beyonce Perry

Angleton graduate Beyonce Perry signed to play basketball at the University of Dallas in Irving. At her signing Friday were, front row, from left, father Frasun Perry, brother Kash Perry, Beyonce and mother Margaret Perry; back, sister Gianna Mejia and Ladycat head coach Dominique Thomas.

ANGLETON — Pursued by a few basketball programs, former Angleton Ladycat Beyonce Perry decided to stay in-state and head to the University of Dallas in Irving.

“I’ve known for about a month or two, but I needed to take care of some things first,” Perry said. “There were a couple of programs that I visited, but there were many schools that wanted me to come for some visits. But my mind was set on the University of Dallas after my visit there.”

Texas Lutheran was the only other in-state program Perry considered. She declined out-of-state programs that tried to recruit her, she said.

The University of Dallas, a Division III program, moved to the top of her list because of the persistence of assistant coach Lauren Jay, who first contacted Perry during her senior season at Angleton.

“The assistant coach had shown a lot of interest in me; she would email me once every two weeks during the season,” Perry said. “Just off the film she watched on me, she was very interested. She even stayed in contact with me even though there was no head coach just to keep me in the loop. I think that is what sold me overall.”

Even though Jay and the remainder of that coaching staff was let go, Bri Calver, who took over the program in March, showed interest in Perry.

“She has been amazing so far. She’s been very welcoming and just wants me to continue doing what I was doing in high school,” Perry said. “But she does want me to be a bit more mature with my game. She liked everything about my game and enjoyed my aggressiveness on the court. She liked that I was a point guard and was consistent with my shooting. She wants me to be a leader as well.”

The Crusaders are coming off a 2-23 record, including 1-15 in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.

A starter since seventh grade, Perry is ready to continue improving.

“Getting that growth in my game has been very challenging in every aspect both mentally and physically,” Perry said. “But, for me, more mentally because basketball is a mental game, and once I understood that, then things started to come easy for me. Whether it was shooting, footwork or defense, once I understood the mental side of it, things became a bit easier for me.

“Having a strong mind in this game is a key to many things.”

Perry led the Ladycats in several categories as a senior, averaging 16 points on 36 percent shooting. She also averaged three assists and three rebounds a game.

“Playing at next level, of course, just like anything else, will be a new challenge with a new environment and playing with new girls,” Perry said. “I think as long as I keep a clear head and focus on what I need to, I will be fine.

“Everything is going to have to go 20 times harder, with repetition in the weight room, training in the gym and with shooting, I am just going to have to do it all a lot harder now.”

Joel Luna is sports editor for The Facts. Contact him at 979-237-0160.

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