NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Vanderbilt women’s basketball head coach Shea Ralph announced Wednesday that five student-athletes have signed letters of intent and will join the program for the 2023–24 season.
The group includes four players measuring at least 6 feet in height and features student-athletes among the top recruits in the country and internationally.
“We are so excited about the women who have chosen to call Vanderbilt home. My staff has worked tirelessly to find the right people in the Class of 2023, and I could not be more proud of the group we are bringing in,” Ralph said. “When I think about the kind of program we want to establish here, these five women meet or exceed all the criteria we have put in place to achieve that, and they are the kind of people and players who can help propel us forward. I am so excited to work with them, to build more trust with them, to help them maximize their potential and to welcome them into our family.”
Forward | 6’3” | Midway, Ga. | Bradwell Institute
Gilmore has earned all-region honors twice during her prep career at Bradwell Institute, where she posted averages of 8.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per game her junior season to help the Tigers finish 22-6 after advancing to the quarterfinals of the state 6A tournament. The forward scored in double figures nine times and had nine outings with 10 or more rebounds last season, recording a double-double on four occasions.
She scored 8.3 points and pulled down 6.6 rebounds per outing when she was a sophomore, her first year as a starter on the varsity squad. A member of the Essence NIKE EYBL club team, Gilmore is serving as class president at Bradwell her senior year.
“Bailey embodies everything we know and believe a Vanderbilt student-athlete to be: student council president, straight-A student and constantly pursuing opportunities that will challenge her to become her best in every area of her life,” Ralph said. “On the court, she can rebound and defend all over the floor, finishes well around the basket and knocks in jump shots consistently. She is still only just touching the surface of what she can accomplish. She is so committed to being great that we know she is the perfect fit for Vanderbilt.”
Guard | 5’6” | Reynoldsburg, Ohio | Pickerington Central High School
Greene, who is rated the No. 3 prospect in the state by Prep Girls Hoops Ohio, was a second-team all-state selection as a junior after helping the Tigers go 20-7 on the way to winning the district championship. It was the third straight season that her efforts led Pickerington Central to the district title, which included a 22-7 finish her freshman season. Greene also competes with the Cincinnati Angels club team.
“Madison is a tenacious combo guard who plays with the competitive edge that aligns with how I want our program to be identified,” Ralph said. “She is an aggressive and elite on-ball defender, which will enhance our defense in the way we want to play. Offensively, she scores in so many ways, is explosive and intense, and helps set her teammates up for success. She has a lot of tools that are hard to come by in a player her age.”
Aga Makurat (pronounced ah-gah mah-coo-raht)
Guard | 6’2” | Sierakowice, Poland | Sopocka Akademia Tenisowa
Last summer, Makurat had averages of 13.8 points and 6.2 rebounds per game for the Polish National Team at the FIBA U18 Women’s European Championship. She also represented her home country in the organization’s U16 Women’s European Championship in 2019, where she averaged 7.6 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists per contest. Makurat’s performance that summer was highlighted by scoring 21 points in the Round of 16 against Belgium while also posting a nine-point, 10-rebound effort in the opening contest of group play in a matchup with the Czech Republic.
Considered among the top 15 recruits in the Class of 2023 by WorldWideHoops, Makurat posted 21 points, 11 rebounds, three blocks and a pair of steals for the Enea AZS II club team in the opening game of the Poland-1Liga season. Her older sisters, Anna and Ola, played collegiately at UConn and Utah, respectively.
“Aga is incredibly unique. She is so skilled for her size and brings a fierce competitiveness that we will be able to rely on from the moment she steps on campus,” Ralph said. “She can play every position on the floor, can shoot it from everywhere and has been playing with professionals for a long time, so she has such a passion and knowledge for the game. With all of her experience and her drive to win, I know she will be able to achieve all of her dreams of here at Vanderbilt.”
Aiyana Mitchell (pronounced eye-ahn-uh)
Forward | 6’4” | Fountain, Colo. | Fountain-Fort Cason High School
Mitchell was an honorable mention all-state selection following her junior season after averaging 13.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.7 blocks and 2.3 steals per outing for Fountain-Fort Cason High. She recorded 10 double-doubles—with seven of those coming in an eight-game stretch midway through the season—to help the Trojans to a first-round victory in the state 5A tournament en route to a 16-8 finish.
In her first season on the varsity, Mitchell averaged 8.3 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game as the school went 10-3 after qualifying for the state tournament.
“Aiyana brings size, physicality and athleticism to our frontcourt that will help ensure we have what we need to compete at the highest level,” Ralph said. “She rebounds all over the floor and out of her area, is an aggressive rim protector and finishes well through contact. She has evolved so much in the time we have watched her play, and we know that trend will only continue. When you combine all of that with her bright and energetic personality, she will add so much to our program and our culture at Vanderbilt.”
Khamil Pierre (pronounced kah-meel pee-air)
Forward | 6’2” | Queen Creek, Ariz. | Perry High School
Pierre earned four stars from ESPN.com, which included her among the top 100 recruits in the country in the Class of 2023. As a junior she averaged 21 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.2 steals per game in leading Perry High to a 22-10 overall record and its first-ever appearance in the state 6A tournament championship game, posting 14 double-doubles. On 10 occasions during the 2021–22 campaign, Pierre finished with at least 20 points and 10 rebounds after accomplishing the feat in each of the Pumas’ final three outings of the season as she would be named first-team all-conference.
She scored 17.3 points per contest her sophomore season, adding 8.8 rebounds and 2.9 steals per game to be named second-team all-league and the conference’s defensive player of the year after helping Perry High go 13-6 after advancing to the quarterfinals of the state 6A tournament. Pierre, who competed at an elite level in soccer before focusing on basketball, also played for the Arizona Elite club team.
“Khamil has limitless potential and has only begun to scratch the surface with what she can accomplish on the court,” Ralph said. “Her athleticism is unique to our sport, and she has already begun playing at and above the rim on both ends of the floor. Her game has grown tremendously from the time we first watched her play. She is a strong young woman from a strong family, has high aspirations and is just a genuinely good person. We look forward to helping her achieve greatness, on and off the floor, at Vanderbilt.”
Vandy—now 1-0 after defeating Western Kentucky on Monday—will play its first home game of the season Thursday when Samford visits Memorial Gymnasium at 6:30 p.m.