FORT MYERS, Florida. – One of the most prolific three-point shooters in NCAA history, Kendall Vaporizer has been named director of operations for the nationally ranked FGCU women’s basketball program, as announced by the head coach Karl Smesko today.
“We’re really excited to have Kendall back on our program,” Smesko said. “Kendall has great energy, great attention to detail and great enthusiasm for the game. She also has a great ability to connect with people.”
Spray played one season for the Eagles helping the Greens and Blues win the 2022 ASUN Championship crown before reaching the second round of the NCAA Tournament following a thrilling win over fifth-seeded, No. 16 Virginia Tech.
The Mt. Juliet, Tenn., native finished her college career ranked fourth all-time in NCAA history with 466 three-pointers in 154 games between UT Martin, Clemson and the Eagles.
Overall, she scored 1,900 points in five seasons for an average of 12.3 points per game. During that time, Spray made 466 out of 1,169 field goal attempts for an average of .399. In her only year with the Vert et Bleu, she was 103 of 226 (.456) for second all-time in program history for single-season trebles. His 45.6% shooting percentage from deep also ranks third for a single season. Spray’s 103 three-pointers last season were also the second of his career. In 2017-18, she hit an Ohio Valley Conference record 125 as a sophomore with UT Martin.
After the season, Spray put on a show in front of a national ESPN audience by winning the 3-point Women’s Championship from Rocket Mortgage. The graduate student scored 18 points in the first round, 25 in the semifinals and 23 in the championship round to win the title. The crowd and ESPN announcers were mesmerized as Spray cleaned rack after rack at every turn.
The FGCU, ranked No. 20 in the latest WBCA poll of the season, finished 2021-22 with an overall record of 30-3 after advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. This marked the eighth NCAA Tournament appearance for the Eagles in the last 11 years and the fifth in a row. Les Vert et Bleu won their ninth ASUN league title to earn the spot, while the 30 wins marked the fifth time in the last eight seasons to reach the milestone.
For full coverage of the women’s basketball schedule, follow the Eagles on Twitter and instagram to @FGCU_WBB, the Facebook at /fgcuwbb and online at www.FGCUathletics.com. You can also sign up to receive news about FGCU women’s basketball or other programs straight to your inbox by visiting www.fgcuathletics.com/email.
IT NEEDS A TEAM to achieve our most recent goal – a $10 million campaign to address the needs of student-athletes for continued academic success, life skills, mental health, nutrition, strength and conditioning as well as needs of the department for expansion and improvement of facilities as well as mentoring and leadership training for coaches and staff. The name embodies our mission and the goal of the EAGLE – Eagle Athletics Generating Lifetime Excellence campaign. Join our team and commit your donation today to help the Eagles of tomorrow!
SUPPORT THE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL PROGRAM
Do you enjoy watching or following the FGCU women’s basketball program? Would you like to play a role in the growth of the program and help it reach heights never reached before? If so, you can contact Director of Advancement, Matt Ring, to learn about opportunities to impact the experiences of our student-athletes. He can be contacted by email at [email protected] or by desk phone at 239-745-4434.
FGCU Head Coach Karl Smesko maintains a career record of 610-128 (.826) overall, which is the third-highest winning percentage among active Division I coaches behind only UConn’s Geno Auriemma and LSU’s Kim Mulkey. He also led the Eagles to a 232-18 (.930) ASUN regular season record and a 30-2 (.933) ASUN tournament record. In the previous 10 seasons, he guided FGCU to a 153-5 (.968) conference record with six undefeated seasons. The 12-time ASUN Coach of the Year has led the program to 12 consecutive 25-win seasons and 18 consecutive 20-win campaigns, including more than 30 wins in five of the last eight years. On top of all that, the Eagles are 549-101 (.845) since Smesko started the program in the 2002-03 season, and the Greens and Blues’ all-time winning percentage of .845 is the best in NCAA Division I. the history of women’s basketball.
FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics Charities of Choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/adminservices/foodpantry and use the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.
ABOUT THE FGCU
FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 92 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 15 seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just 11 seasons of DI playoff eligibility, the Eagles brought together 45 teams or individuals competing in NCAA championships. In 2022, the men’s golf team became the first program to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Eight FGCU programs ranked in the top 25 nationally in their respective sports, including women’s basketball (#20, 2021-22), beach volleyball (#20, 2022) and men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s football. (2018) as four of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Vert et Bleu posted the department’s best sixth place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top 100 nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and Florida State’s top seven teams won the NCAA Public Recognition Award for their rate of academic progression in their sport. FGCU also collectively achieved a record 3.50 in-class GPA in the fall 2020 semester and outperformed the general undergraduate college population for 26 consecutive semesters. The last five semesters (Fall 2019 – Spring 2022) saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a cumulative team average of 3.0 or higher. The Eagles also served an all-time high of 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two finalists for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.