MANHATTAN, Kan. – Peyton Williams and Ayoka lee have shined on the court together and as individuals this year. Their last time out, they combined for 55 points and 32 rebounds, but numbers like that don’t happy overnight. Both had challenges. For Lee, it was bouncing back from injury and adjusting to redshirting her first year in Manhattan
“That year just really taught me and allowed me to get healthy and get back stronger so this year I could really contribute at the level I wanted to,” Lee said.
Williams had her own challenge, being a multi-sport athlete.
“It’s a little bit of an adjustment coming back from volleyball, always has been and you kind of know that coming in, especially for your senior year,” Williams said.
Coach Jeff Mittie knew before last year they had something big in the works, especially for lee
“We saw it coming,” Mittie said.
Once both were on the court together, chemistry still had to be built,
“Those two have such great communication too, they really like each other, they really talk to each other on the floor and that just keeps getting better and better,” Mittie continued.
And it’s shown in big 12 play, both ladies have smashed records and enjoyed watching each other compete.
“I mean it’s really hard to not just love playing with Yokie as a player and practice seeing her develope, it was just pure excitement for me,” Williams said.
“I love to see Peyton go out and do her thing, she’s helped me a lot. Peyton’s just not only as a basketball player but as a person, she’s amazing and just completely well rounded,” Lee said as she smiled.
And Lee has helped Williams too, having a 6’5 presence in the paint has allowed Williams to show her full skill set, and they feed off each others’ energy
“They’re both super competitive, and they feed off of each other which is really kind of funny in that you can almost kind of sense that those two, they know they play better together, they complement each other well,” Mittie said.
And that tandem in the paint is peaking at the right time, with six left to play in the regular season, the Williams-Lee connection is primed to get the ‘cats back to the big dance.