CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The North Carolina Tar Heels women’s basketball team announced on Friday that it granted forward Stephanie Mavunga her release to speak with other schools about the possibility of transferring.
“It’s with a heavy heart that I have asked for, and been granted permission to talk to other teams and explore transfer opportunities,” Mavunga said in the departmental announcement put out by UNC Athletic Communications.
“I wish to thank Coach Hatchell, the whole coaching staff and my teammates and fans for their support over the two years I’ve spent in Chapel Hill. I have nothing but great things to say about the program and I am very grateful for the mentorship and development that I received along the way at UNC. They have helped me tremendously! From the big things to the little things, they’ve been a part of my greatest support system. I was molded into a player who earned first team All-ACC honors, and was even blessed with the opportunity to represent my country in Canada during the Pan American games this summer. I wish everyone in the program the best of success. I have decided to look at transfer opportunities for personal reasons. As we all know, once a Tar Heel, always a Tar Heel.”
Tar Heels Hall of Fame head coach Sylvia Hatchell offered these comments on Mavunga’s desire to transfer:
“The players on our team are part of my family and I love them dearly. It has been a pleasure to coach Stephanie the past two years. She is an outstanding basketball player and it has been such a delight for her to be a part of our championship basketball family. I know she will have a successful future and I wish her the absolute best. We have an outstanding class of incoming student-athletes joining our talented returning players and I’m excited about the upcoming season.”
News of Mavunga’s desire to transfer is the third in recent weeks as guards Jessica Washington and Allisha Gray did the same.
Hatchell added comments related to what a recent Notice of Allegations received from the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) inferred about the women’s basketball program at North Carolina.
“There has been a lot of speculation surrounding our program in recent weeks and that’s all that it is – speculation,” Hatchell stated.
“Our players are working every day to get better and I appreciate their efforts. A number of former players have reached out to me with their support. We have a strong and loyal Tar Heel family.”