SAN ANTONIO – The last few weeks have been a dream for San Antonio native Kiana Williams.
The Wagner High School alumna and Stanford star returned to the Alamo City for this year’s Women’s NCAA basketball tournament and helped the Cardinal take home the their first title since 1992. Along the way, she established herself as one of the best players in Stanford history, setting a record for threes made in a career and averaging nearly 20 points per game over the past two seasons.
Now, still riding high from that championship moment in her hometown, she has finally heard her name called in the WNBA Draft.
Williams was selected by the Seattle Storm 18th overall in the second round of the WNBA Draft on Thursday night. She is the 27th player drafted into the WNBA from Stanford. Williams held a draft party with friends and family to celebrate the occasion at The South Chicken & Waffles in Selma.
The Storm are getting an impressive leader and playmaker. Over the course of her four-year collegiate career, Williams posted 1,834 points, 464 assists and hit 311 three-pointers, one of only 22 players since 2000 to boast that kind of stat-line. She also proved to be extremely durable, appearing in 128 straight games since she was elevated into the starting lineup at Stanford.
Meanwhile, Kiana will move from one championship team to another. The Storm took home the title last season in dominant fashion, sweeping the Las Vegas Aces in the WNBA Finals. Every game was decided by double-digits. With the addition of Williams, the Storm have added much-needed depth at the guard position, and now Kiana will get a chance to learn from WNBA legend Sue Bird.
KSAT 12 Sports′ Larry Ramirez was on hand for the watch party Thursday night and recaps Williams’ historic night:
Guard Kiana Williams was selected 18th overall as the sixth pick in the second round by the defending WNBA champion Seattle Storm. It’s a dream comes true for the San Antonio native.
“Absolutely. I’m 100 percent just thankful that I’m here,” Williams said. “The work has just begun. I’m going to celebrate tonight, then it’s back to gym tomorrow. "
A projected first round selection, Kiana had to wait longer than expected, but she’s not bummed out at all. She’s thrilled to join the Storm, one of her top choices.
“I wasn’t really worried about where I went in the draft, I just wanted to go to the right fit,” Williams said. “I get to go learn from behind Sue Bird. She’s the greatest point guard to ever play to me. I’m going to be watching how she ties her shoes, how she eats her eggs, all that. I’m so excited and thankful.”
For a second consecutive year, the WNBA draft was held virtually due to COVID-19, so Kiana held a draft party at The South Chicken and Waffles in Selma surrounded by her family and friends.
“To have this moment in front of family and friends it means a lot,” Williams said.
This has been an exciting time for Williams. She won an NCAA national championship on April 4, as Stanford beat Arizona, 54-53. Eleven days later, she was selected by Seattle. Two of the biggest events of her life happened in her own backyard.
“The draft is usually in New York, and I know a lot of my family members probably wouldn’t be able to go,” Williams said. “To have the tournament here and this moment, me stepping into this next chapter in my home city where it all started, there’s no better feeling.”
To top it all off, the Wagner High School great was recognized by San Antonio’s City Council Thursday morning. She received a citation from Mayor Ron Nirenberg which is one of the city’s ceremonial presentations.
Honored to officially recognize San Antonio’s @Kiana__W, who won a #ncaaw national championship with @StanfordWBB in her hometown.— Mayor Ron | Wear a mask! 😷 (@Ron_Nirenberg) April 15, 2021
What an incredible person and story.
Congratulations, Kiana. Onward to the @WNBA! pic.twitter.com/kAr9BDaiHS
“The mayor invited me down, we went to city hall, and he presented me with a San Antonio recognition for winning the national championship here in our hometown,” she said. “So a shout out to mayor and all the council members for having me.”
Training camp for the upcoming WNBA season opens around April 25. The season starts on May 14.