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US college record-setter Clark opts into Women’s NBA Draft

Caitlin Clark, the all-time women’s scoring leader in major US college basketball, announced on Thursday she will enter the Women’s NBA Draft after completing her current record-shattering season.

The 22-year-old from Iowa capital Des Moines posted her decision on social media ahead of her Saturday regular-season finale at home against Ohio State.

“While the season is far from over and we have a lot more goals to achieve, it will be my last one at Iowa. I am excited to be entering the 2024 WNBA Draft,” Clark wrote.

The Indiana Fever own the top pick in April’s WNBA Draft.

Clark has 3,650 career points, one more than 1970s Kansas star Lynette Woodard, after a 33-point performance in a Wednesday win at Minnesota.

She needs only 18 points on Saturday to pass 1960s Louisiana State star Pete Maravich for the all-time National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) men’s or women’s record set in 1970 in the days before the 3-point shot.

Tickets for the contest are going on the resale market for more than $500, the highest ever for a women’s basketball game.

Clark will depart Iowa after four seasons, giving up a possible 2024-25 campaign for the Hawkeyes. She was among players active for the Covid-hit 2020-21 campaign who were given an fifth season of eligibility due to a shortened season.

In saying goodbye, Clark appreciated the support her record run brought at every Iowa game and behind the scenes.

“It is impossible to fully express my gratitude to everyone who has supported me during my time at Iowa — my teammates, who made the last four years the best; my coaches, trainers and staff, who always let me be me; Hawkeye fans who filled Carver every night; and everyone who came out to support us across the country, especially the young kids,” she wrote.

Clark also thanked her family and friends and closed by saying, “Because of all of you my dreams came true.”

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