Georgia coach Joni Taylor speaks to players during a timeout. The Georgia women’s basketball team defeated the Kennesaw State University Owls 80-65 in their home opener on Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019, in Stegeman Coliseum in Athens, Georgia. (Photo/Julian Alexander, jalexander@randb.com)

On Wednesday afternoon, the Georgia women’s basketball team signed two highly-rated recruits for the 2020-21 season.

The Lady Bulldogs will be joined by guard Sarah Ashlee Baker and forward Zoesha Smith next year.

From Birmingham, Alabama, Barker is a four-star recruit and is ranked among the top-25 guards nationally, per espnW. She is the daughter of Jay Barker, a former quarterback for Alabama who led the team in the National Championship in 1992.

Barker currently attends and plays for Spain Park High School, where she led the team to the 2018 Class 7A state title, averaging 14 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Standing at 5-foot-10, she is the highest ranked recruit in the state of Alabama.

“It has been such a pleasure to build a relationship with Sarah Ashlee and her family throughout this recruiting process,” Taylor said. “She is a very impressive young lady who fits the mold of what it means to be a Georgia Lady Bulldog. Sarah Ashlee makes everyone around her better both on and off the floor, and she is a tremendous competitor who will outwork anyone. We are fortunate to get a player like Sarah Ashlee, and I am so excited she will be joining us in Athens.”

Smith is the No. 23 ranked forward in the nation. Currently enrolled at Glynn Academy in Brunswick, Ga., she led her team in points, rebounds, steals and blocks her junior year, while also driving the squad to its first region championship since 1994. Glynn Academy finished with a 26-5 record and a quarterfinal finish in the Class 6A playoffs that year with Smith’s leadership.

The Georgia native also placed on the Georgia Athletic Coaches Association All-State team, the USA Today All-USA Georgia girls second team and earned an MVP honor at the GACA junior all-star game.

“When you look at Zoesha, the first thing that stands out is her athleticism,” Taylor noted. “She is an explosive and versatile player who can really do it all. She’s a scorer, she’s a rebounder, she makes plays and she defends really well. When we look at potential prospects, we want people who fit our program and our culture. Zoesha is an excellent player and is someone who will fit into what we want to do here at Georgia.”

Smith and Barker will help to fill the two roster spots of current seniors Ari Henderson and Stephanie Paul for the 2020-2021 season.

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