Washington State women's basketball coach June Daugherty received an extension to her current contract through 2019 after leading the program to its first postseason appearance since 1991. The extension was announced on Monday by Athletics Director Bill Moos.
Daugherty's seventh year as a head coach at WSU was easily the most successful season during her tenure. The Cougars finished the season with a 17-17 (11-9 Pac-12) record, and a first round loss in the WNIT. This season was also the first season that two WSU basketball players (guards Lia Galdeira and Tia Presley) were announced to the All-Pac-12 team in program history.
In the press release posted on the athletic department's website, Moos said, "June, her staff and the entire team are to be commended for a truly fine season. Reaching the postseason for the first time in 23 years is a notable achievement. I’m looking forward to watching this program continue to improve in the years to come."
Under Daugherty, the program has reached the Pac-12 Tournament quarterfinals twice in the last three years (2014 and 2012), been to its first WNIT tournament, and finished with a .500 record for the first time in 19 years.
Her first season at WSU was just shy of a disaster on the court (the team finished with a 5-25, 2-16 Pac-12 record), but off of it was a major success as the Cougs pulled in the 16th best class in the country. Unfortunately injuries were a major problem for that class, and it left the program without a lot of depth on the bench as role players (and underclassmen) became the starters when the stars went down.
The program's fortunes began to turn around with the signing of the 2009-2010 recruiting class -- among the players signed that year was WNBA combine invitee Sage Romberg. That class saw all three of its athletes play in every game during the 2013-14 season.
The production of that class was aided by the next two recruiting classes that brought in major contributors Shalie Dheensaw, Presley, Galdeira, Mariah Cooks, and Dawnyelle Awa -- the backbone of the current team that is hoping to make it back to the NCAA tournament in 2015.
"It is with a great deal of gratitude towards Bill Moos that I accept the extension offered upon my contract as head basketball coach," Daugherty said in a statement. "I am honored to have the opportunity to build upon the successful foundation that we have put into place. The dedication and hard work of our players is a real credit to their passion to represent the Crimson and Gray in a first class manner on and off the court. My coaching staff is to be commended upon their efforts for recruiting talented student-athletes of outstanding character to our great university and city of Pullman.
"I am extremely proud of our 100% graduation rate in the first seven years as head coach and appreciate the support from the best fans in college athletics. I am honored to mentor our student-athletes as we continue the climb to the NCAA championship in the near future."