As part of perhaps the best backcourt in Palisades High girls basketball history, Kayla Williams helped the Dolphins win the City Open Division title in 2016 alongside fellow guards Kayla Merrill-Gillett and Chelsey Gipson. Now she is a rising star at UC Irvine, where she made the Big West All-Tournament team after leading the Anteaters to the championship game against UC Davis. It wash UCI’s first trip to the Big West finals since 1997.
Williams, a redshirt freshman, scored 12 points, hitting four 3-pointers, to go along with three rebounds and two steals in the finals. An injury forced her to sit out the quarterfinal game, but she scored in double digits in the semifinals and final.
Palisades repeated as City Open champion when Williams was in ninth grade. She played in 31 games and averaged 11.9 points and a team-high 4.6 steals that season. As a sophomore she played in all 35 of the Dolphins’ games, averaging 19.9 points and a team-high 4.5 steals but Palisades lost in the Open Division finals to Fairfax. When Pali High coach Torino Johnson resigned after the 2016-17 season, Williams transferred to Bishop Montgomery in Torrance, where she was a four-star recruit. She averaged 16.4 points as a senior for the Knights.
She sat out all of last season at UCI with an injury.
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.