Stanford's trio of McDonald's All Americans continuing to build bonds

Stanford's trio of McDonald's All Americans continuing to build bonds

McDonalds All American Game

Stanford's trio of McDonald's All Americans continuing to build bonds

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DiJonai Carrington (left) plays catch with a child during a visit to the Ronald McDonald House in downtown Chicago. (Photo credit: Brian Spurlock, USA TODAY Sports)

DiJonai Carrington (left) plays catch with a child during a visit to the Ronald McDonald House in downtown Chicago. (Photo credit: Brian Spurlock, USA TODAY Sports)

CHICAGO –– Stanford is tied with Maryland for the most represented school among the girls players at this year’s McDonald’s All American Game, but DiJonai Carrington, Nadia Fingall and Anna Wilson will get to play together this week before they put on the Cardinal jersey.

Kaila Charles, Blair Watson and Destiny Slocum are all future Terrapins, but Charles and Watson are East teammates and Slocum is on the West roster. The Stanford trio is all playing for the West.

“We all went on our visit together, and just coming together before we get to go, that’s going to make our bond stronger,” Fingall said. “Once we get to college, we’ll have memories we’ve already created.”

Carrrington is 6-foot guard from Horizon Christian Academy in San Diego, Wilson is a 5-7 point guard from Bellevue, Wash., and Fingall is a 6-2 center from Chocktawhatchee in Fort Walton Beach, Fla. They are Stanford’s first McDonald’s All Americans since Kailee Johnson and Erica McCall in the Class of 2013.

The Stanford recruiting class, ranked among the top 10, also includes Mikaela Brewer from Innisdale Secondary School in Barrie, Ontario, who is not an All American for obvious reasons.

GALLERY: McDonald’s All Americans visit Ronald McDonald House

The three already have a group chat going every time Stanford plays. Though they missed Stanford’s Elite Eight loss to Washington on Sunday because of a visit to the Ronald McDonald House, they are looking forward to ways they can contribute to the team next season.

“I’m an attacker. That’s not something they struggle with, but it’s something I could help them to improve on,” Carrington said. “We feel like we could bring athleticism and a lot more speed to the team. We’re all athletic and we like to run and play scrappy.”

For each one of the girls headed to Stanford, their choice was about more than basketball. The academic reputation of the school was a major factor. They want to study a wide array of subjects, and are all confident Stanford will help them.

“Sometimes I want to be an astronaut, or crazy, different things, but Stanford gives you the opportunity to try crazy different things,” Wilson said. “I won’t say I have a definite one, but some things that interest me are environmental science, or international relations.”

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Carrington will study psychology with a minor in criminology, while Fingall plans on majoring in anthropology.

“I like to watch people. I like to see how they interact. With my  dad being in the military, going to airports all the time, I just sat there. I would think, I wonder what she does, what he does. It was really interesting. Studying societies is something I would love to do,” she said.

Even outside of individual majors, the players believe Stanford offer each a place to fit in.

“Having that culture where being a nerd isn’t a weird thing is something I’ve liked,” Finagle said. “Fitting in with people that have that same academic drive as you, and being on a team with girls that have that same academic drive, and athletic drive. You’re really around a lot of like-minded people who are determined and want to succeed.”

Said Wilson, “Mostly, it’s Stanford and its pursuit of excellence. It’s pretty awesome there.”

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