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Belfry senior Katie Ball is surrounded by family, friends, BHS faculty and staff and UPike coach Clifton Williams as she signed a letter of intent to continue her basketball career at the University of Pikeville on Friday in the BHS library.

GOODY, Ky. — The University of Pikeville women’s basketball team picked up a big commitment from a local product this past week as Belfry big Katie Ball signed to continue her career with the Lady Bears.

Ball chose UPike after she had previously verbally committed to D-1 Cleveland State last Summer. She had also received offers from Marshall and UNC Charlotte.

This season for the Lady Pirates and coach Kevin Deskins, Ball has been a terror as she is averaging 22 points and 12 rebounds per game through 10 contests. She did miss two games earlier in the year with an injury.

Ball started her career high atop Miner Mountain and helped lead Mingo Central to two of their more successful seasons in their short history, including the school’s only girls sectional championship in 2017, before transferring to Belfry as a junior.

This was a huge get for Lady Bears coach Clifton Williams as they were able to keep a local talent with Division 1 offers.

He has been the head coach at UPike for four years, leading them to a 67-45 record during that time and tro trips to the NAIA National Tournament,

The Bears play in NAIA Division I and are members of the Mid South Conference.

Jarrid McCormick is a reporter for the Williamson Daily News. He can be reached by email at jmccormick@HDMediaLLC.com.