SYRACUSE, N.Y. (SYRACUSE ATHLETICS) –
Syracuse women’s basketball head coach Felisha Legette-Jack added some height to her roster on Friday afternoon with the addition of transfers Olivia Owens and Kyra Wood. Owens and Wood, both New York natives, return home to the Empire State and will play immediately for the Orange next season.
Owens, a 6-foot-4 forward, spent the last two seasons at Kentucky where she appeared in 53 games with 14 starts for the Wildcats. She averaged 3.7 points and 2.9 rebounds during her time at UK and shot 43.5 percent from the field. Owens scored two points in 14 minutes off the bench in Kentucky’s 64-62 SEC Tournament Championship win over No. 1 South Carolina.
Owens began her collegiate career at Maryland where she played in 16 games as a freshman before missing her sophomore season for medical reasons. During her freshman campaign at Maryland, she shot 55 percent from the field and scored in nine games. Her biggest performance of the season was in the Big Ten Championship game where she scored four points and added four rebounds while helping the Terrapins to the title.
The Albany, N.Y., native was a five star recruit out of Niskayuna High School. She ranked No. 34 overall in the 2018 class according to ESPN and was the No. 5 post player in her class.
Wood is a 6-foot-3 forward from Buffalo, N.Y. She started eight of the final nine games of the season at Temple and appeared in 25 of the Owls 28 games. She was second on the team in blocked shots (29) while averaging 3.2 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. Wood had a season-high 16 points and eight rebounds in a win over East Carolina and had a season-high 12 rebounds against Wichita State.
Wood attended City Honors School in Buffalo, N.Y., where she was an All-Western New York Second Team Selection and the Co-Canisius Cup Player of the Year. She reached the 1,000-point milestone while a sophomore at CHS while averaging an impressive 34.0 points per game. During her junior season she averaged 25.9 points, 12.2 rebounds an added 4.3 blocks per game. As a senior, she crossed the 2,000- point threshold for her career.
Owens and Wood join University at Buffalo transfers Georgia Woolley and Soniaa Wilson as Legette-Jack’s first recruits since being named Syracuse’s head coach on March 26, 2022.
Kristen Sharkey, University at Buffalo alum and longtime assistant on Felisha Legette-Jack’s UB staff, is joining the Syracuse women’s basketball program as an assistant coach and the team’s recruiting coordinator.
For the last seven seasons, Sharkey helped build the Buffalo program into a perennial contender in the Mid-American Conference (MAC). Buffalo has made four NCAA Tournament appearances during her time as an assistant coach at UB including a run to the Sweet Sixteen in 2018.
As a player under Legette-Jack, Sharkey started 85-straight games to end her UB career. She led the Bulls to their first back-to-back winning seasons in 2013-14 and 2014-15 since the 1999-2000 and 2000-01 seasons.
Sharkey averaged 14.1 points and 8.1 rebounds as a senior at UB. She scored 1,264 points and had 758 rebounds during her career and is 10th on Buffalo’s all-time scoring list. She is tied for sixth in career games played at Buffalo and is fifth in free throw percentage (.772), eighth in free throws made (305), 11th in rebounds, and 13th in blocked shots (98).
Sharkey graduated from Buffalo with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and earned her MBA from UB in 2021.