Twenty years after the last group of HBCU players was selected in the WNBA Draft, Jackson State’s Ameshya Williams-Holliday has added to that number.
The 6’4, senior from Gulfport, Mississippi was selected in the third round (25th overall) by the Indiana Fever on Monday night. She is the first WNBA Draft pick from a historically black college or university since a trio of players were selected in the 2002 draft. Williams-Holliday is the second-highest drafted HBCU player in league history. Only Howard’s Denique Graves (15th overall) was a higher selection.
Williams-Holliday is a three-time first-team All-SWAC selection (2020, 2021, 2022), a three-time league Defensive Player of the Year (2020, 2021, 2022), and in 2022 became the first SWAC player since 2019 to win both SWAC Player Of The Year and Defensive Player Of The Year honors in the same season.
Williams-Holliday averaged 16.1 points and 11.2 rebounds, and 2.9 blocks per game for her career. She scored in double-figures 71 times (including final 39 consecutive games), 53 10+ rebound games, 52 double-doubles (including two 20-20 games), and 60 games of 2+ blocks.
Williams-Holliday led the conference in scoring (19.2 ppg), rebounds (11.4 rpg), field goal percentage (57.7%), and blocks (2.7 bpg) during the 2021-2022 season. She recorded 22 double-doubles during the season (tied for 6th nationally) while scoring in double figures in every game and had 22 games with at least two blocked shots.
The Mississippi State transfer scored a career-high 33 points with 11 rebounds vs. Florida A&M (Feb. 12), and scored 18 points with a season-high 21 rebounds, and a career-high tying seven blocked shots at Arkansas (Dec. 9).
Williams-Holliday joins Southern’s Jaclyn Winfield as the second SWAC woman drafted into the WNBA. There are currently no active WNBA players from HBCUs in the league.