Florida Gators women’s basketball signs one on Wednesday

Special report on the Florida Gators women’s basketball team:
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Ariel Johnson became the first player to sign a National Letter of Intent under new Gator head coach Cameron Newbauer, who today announced Johnson’s commitment to continue her education and athletic career at the University of Florida.

Johnson is a 5-9 guard from Stockton, Calif., where she stars at St. Mary’s High School.

Johnson at a Glance:

* Enters senior season with the Rams having compiled 870 points, 397 rebounds, 226 assists and 232 steals, while hitting a career-mark of 76 percent (178-233) from the free throw line.

* Junior Year: averaged 15 points, 6.4 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 3.2 steals; team won 18th section title and advanced to the semifinals of the NorCal Open Division; Individual Awards: First Team All-Area by The (Stockton) Record

* Sophomore Year: averaged 8.0 points and 3.6 rebounds; team compiled a 28-1 record and was ranked No. 20 in the final 2015-16 USA Today Super 25

* Freshman Year: averaged 6.6 points and 3.4 rebounds

Also of Note:

* Participated in the 2016 USA Women’s U17 World Championship Team Trials

* Fourth Gator from California and the first since Brittany Shine, who played at UF from 2010-12

Quoting Coach Cam Newbauer:
“We are very excited to announce the signing of Ariel Johnson in our inaugural recruiting class. Ari embodies everything that the University of Florida and our athletic department stands for.

“Her ability to play multiple guard positions will increase our skill set and depth immediately on the court. She is a proven winner and has learned from one of the best high school coaches in America at St. Mary’s from Coach Tom Gonsalves.

“We are grateful for Ari and her wonderful family to be part of the Gator Nation. Our fans and campus community will enjoy her presence on and off the court the day she sets foot in Gainesville.”

Quoting Ariel Johnson:

“I chose to be a Gator because UF has great athletic and academic programs that will get me where I need to go in the future. Not only is UF a great school but it has a special atmosphere. Everyone whom I have met at Florida is extremely friendly and welcoming.

“Coach Cam is an amazing guy! I’m so happy and excited to be a part of his program for the next four years. I know he will do a lot of great things at UF and bring championships to the basketball program.”

2017-18 Florida Gator Signing Class
Ariel Johnson, 5-9, Guard, Stockton, CA/St. Mary’s High School

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.