Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Kobe Bryant praises Minnesota's Rachel Banham for her performance against MSU

February 22, 2016
Women's Basketball Non-conference NJIT
Women's Basketball Non-conference NJIT —
Photo by Jerry E. Lee | and Jerry E. Lee The State News

Her performance this season is one of a kind. Minnesota Golden Gopher's senior guard Rachel Banham scored 52 points against the Spartans on Sunday, but her team still fell short and lost to MSU by a final score of 114-106.

The game on Sunday marked the second time this month that Banham broke the 50-point threshold, last time being against Northwestern where she scored 60 and tied the Big Ten record for scoring in a single game.  Banham's 52-point game was also good enough to break the Big Ten's all-time scoring record, previously held by Penn State's Kelly Mazzante.

Banham leads the Big Ten in scoring and is now second in the NCAA, averaging a whopping 27.5 points per game.  Banham also leads the conference in total 3-pointers made with 97 thus far.  Her recent performances have been far from unnoticed and have been gaining notoriety all across the nation.  Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant has been very impressed by Banham's play in recent games.

This isn't the first time Bryant has given her recognition, either.  Following Banham's 60-point game on February 7 against the Wildcats, Bryant took to Twitter and congratulated her for her impressive performance.

Banham replied to Bryant shortly after.

Bryant also tweeted her after she hit a fade away, buzzer-beating three to beat Iowa at the last second on February 15.

When MSU hosted Minnesota on Sunday, Banham and Spartan guard Aerial Powers combined for 92 total points. Both stars played for nearly the whole game, each with 38 minutes in the contest.

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