September 7, 2018 10:27:12 AM
STARKVILLE -- After helping build Mississippi State women's basketball into a national contender as a player, Ketara Chapel returns to the program looking to help continue the success in a new capacity.
Chapel re-joins Vic Schaefer's reigning Southeastern Conference regular-season champion Bulldogs as a student assistant coach, where she will work with former teammate Dominique Dillingham in assisting with day-to-day operations of the program.
"I'm excited to have the opportunity to continue my education at Mississippi State while also working with coach Schaefer and the best coaching staff in the country," Chapel said. "They taught me so much as a player, and I am so honored to be able to pass that along to our current team while also continuing to learn from them in a different capacity. I will always cherish being part of building this program as a player, and I'm looking forward to continuing it in a new role."
Chapel and Dillingham were part of the first recruiting class signed by Schaefer. As freshmen in 2013-14, they led MSU to the quarterfinals of the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT). The following year, they guided the Bulldogs to the program's first NCAA tournament appearance since 2010.
"We are very excited to have her back working with us," Schaefer said. "She made such an impact on our program and the community as a player, and I'm glad she has the opportunity to continue with us on our staff.
"Ketara and Dominique know what work ethic looks like. They know not only what to do but how to do it, and that's something we take pride in here. Anytime you have young people who have instant credibility because of the student-athletes they were, it is a tremendous asset to your program."
After helping take State to the Sweet 16 as a junior, Chapel and fellow seniors Breanna Richardson, Chinwe Okorie, and Dillingham led the Bulldogs to a thrilling win against Baylor that clinched the Oklahoma City Regional championship and the program's first trip to the Final Four.
Playing in her home state of Texas, Chapel was a key part of MSU's historic upset of top-ranked UConn that gave the Bulldogs a berth in the first of back-to-back national championship games.
The Temple, Texas, native and four-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection was part of 111 victories in her four seasons in Starkville. During that time, she appeared in 142 games and started 61 contests, averaging 4.1 points and 2.8 rebounds per contest.
MSU also added Tupelo native Abby Hunt as the program's coordinator of on-campus recruiting and digital services. A 2017 graduate of MSU, Hunt spent the past three seasons as a student assistant and secondary women's basketball sports information director.
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