Lady Eagles Class of 2022 Early Signing Day

Seven DeSoto Lady Eagles Basketball Champions Commit to Division-1 Top Colleges at Early Signing Day
Posted on 11/18/2021
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Seven DeSoto High School Lady Eagles celebrated another history-making milestone as they all signed letters of intent to play Division I Collegiate Basketball amid cheers, and a strong showing of support from family, friends, coaches, trainers, and peers on November 10.

These Lady Eagles are all standout members of the 2021 UIL state championship team and are included in the Dallas Morning News’ Top 20 Recruiting List for the Class of 2022. 

“This is a huge opportunity for our girl's basketball team and it is an honor to see these seven students participate in this level of scholarship (play),” said Andrea Robinson, DeSoto High School head girls basketball coach.  “This is really rare to have all students committed to Division I schools.”

Seeing the realization of a dream for these seven Lady Eagles, Robinson was inspired to bring the district’s middle girls basketball teams to the DHS signing day event to experience this history-making moment for the high school senior student-athletes firsthand. “I am really big on young children just dreaming first. After this, they can put in the work and see their dreams come true. I wanted them to be here today to see that this is possible and can happen for them.”

Looking over the gym at the college-themed tables where the Lady Eagles sat alongside their parents, Head Coach Robinson and Assistant Coach Kadi Creel took a brief pass down memory lane recalling the early experiences with each champion recruit when playing collegiate basketball was just a dream for these seniors. 

“To see these young ladies go from ponytails and chewing gum, loud talking each other in the hallways about their basketball skills in middle school and sometimes getting in trouble along the way, makes seeing where they are today is really special,” summed Robinson.


Coach Creel recalled the possibilities that she saw in these student-athletes, describing Amina Muhammad as the fastest girl on the court in middle school and Ja’Mia Perry as being able to out dance and out “ball’ anyone on or off the court. Creel remarked her amazement in the specific skills of all of the students as they matriculated to high school and shared how excited she was to have this group on the Lady Eagles team.

“To see these girls start in middle school and now come full circle, making history last year as the first DeSoto High School Girls UIL State Champions and to come back this year hungry for more is nothing short of amazing,” said Coach Creel. “We hope that this is just the beginning of another history-making year.”

During the celebration, DeSoto High School's four-star, all-state senior Sa’Myah Smith, the Lady Eagles 6'4 combo forward, ranked No.1 on the Dallas Morning News list of top recruits and officially committed to Louisiana State University (LSU) in October. Two other DHS Lady Eagles join Smith to help round out the top three recruits on this list, Amina Muhummad who will attend The University of Texas at Austin, and Tionna Herron who will attend the University of Kentucky ranked No. 2 and No. 3 respectively.

“It is a pretty exciting day, making history with all of us signing together to all Division I schools. It is showing off all the hard work that I am doing. It is a blessing,” said Smith as she reflected on her first memories of basketball. “I grew up around basketball when I was a very young child, like five years old. I was the only girl amongst my cousins so it was kind of a rough sport for me at first but I soon learned to love it. Now, we (the Lady Eagles) are focused on winning a back-to-back championship before we leave.”

Just as stellar and historic as their last year’s state championship win, a new imprint on their legacy has been made with this class of Lady Eagles being a part of an extended elite sports family who honed their skills of the game together since middle school. 

“This is a good feeling especially since we all have grown up together and now we are singing together,” said Amina Muhammad as she thought about this signing day experience.

“I am just so glad to see what we were able to accomplish knowing that we have been through a lot,” said Tionna Herron, who started playing in middle school and is a Post on the DHS Lady Eagles team. “This is really special and it feels good to see how far I have come and am looking forward to the future. I believe that our training staff already trains us like we are in college. So for me, the thing that will be different (in college) is the competition of playing other Division I teams.”

Many of the parents and families applauded the work and support of DeSoto ISD, the coaches, and trainers over the years to help their children to arrive at their current area of success.

Nisa Muhammad, the grandmother of Amina, shared her appreciation for the growth of her granddaughter going to school in DeSoto ISD. “They demanded and challenged her to her best and did not accept mediocrity.”  

LaTonya Base, the mother of Ja'Mia Harris, was overjoyed. “I am excited about the possibilities and can not wait to see her play at the next level and possibly the WNBA. It has truly been a process to get here and it took all of us working together with her trainers and coaches. It feels so awesome.”

These DeSoto Lady Eagles reigning state champions are preparing to SOAR into their next level of academic and athletic success!

  • Michayla Gatewood (PG) – Kansas State University (K-State)
  • Ja’Mia Harris (SG, PG)  – Kansas State University (K-State)
  •  Tionna Herron (PF, C) – University of Kentucky (UK)
  •  Amina Muhammad (SF, PF) – The University of Texas at Austin (UT)
  • Jiya Perry (SG, SF) – Southern Methodist University (SMU)
  • Sa’Myah Smith (PF) – Louisiana State University (LSU)
  •  Ayanna Thompson (SG, SF ) - University of Mississippi (Ole Miss)