Kearney, Neb. – Nebraska-Kearney head women’s basketball coach Carrie Eighmey announced today that Kaleigh Kummer and Haley Simental will play for the Lopers next season. They are the fourth and fifth members, respectively, of the 2019 recruiting class as three high school seniors came aboard back in November. The Lopers had one senior on its 2018-19 roster in forward Jaymie Bernbeck.
Kummer is a 5-7 guard from North Platte St. Patrick’s with Simental a 5-8 lefty point guard and graduate transfer from the University of Denver and Pueblo, Colo. Simental spent four seasons at Division I DU, a member of the Summit League. She took a redshirt season in 2017-18 and missed most of the 2015-16 campaign due to injury. Playing in 67 games with three starts in her Pioneer career, she amassed 167 points, 52 rebounds and 35 assists. She had a pair of seven-point games this past season and was a career 83% free throw shooter. Starring at Pueblo West High School, Simental was a two-time MVP who helped the Cyclones reach the 2015 Class 4A Final Four. Named South-Central League MVP as a senior Simental was a three-time all-state pick, earning first-team honors in 2015 and 2014. Finally, she holds multiple school records including points in a career (1,411), assists in a season (119) and career free throw percentage (74%).
Off the court, Simental was a member of the National Honors Society and Valedictorian of the Colorado Connections Academy. Kummer was part of a St. Pat’s team that went 24-2 this past winter and reached the Class D-1 state tournament for a third straight season. She averaged 15.9 points, 3.3 steals, 2.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game to earn first-team all-state honors from the Omaha World-Hearld.
Kummer led the Lady Irish in scoring, assist and steals. Named the 2018 North Platte Telegraph Player of the Year, Kummer set St. Pat’s records for career points (1,466), career threes made (170), points in a game (37, vs. Cozad) and made threes in a season (70). During the fall Kummer starred on the volleyball team, leading the 2018 team in kills per set (2.8) ranking second in digs (2.9). The Lady Irish went 24-9 and reached the Class D1 state tourney. In the spring, the National Honor Society member is Class C state qualifier in both the long and triple jumps and 300 hurdles. UNK went 15-14 (8-11 MIAA) this past season, reaching the MIAA Tournament and tying for eighth place in the league standings. The Lopers will return its top seven scorers including three All-MIAA selections.