Kate MartinBROOKLYN, N.Y. - When it comes to Kate Martin, there are three words to describe where she'll be going to play professionally at: Vegas, baby, Vegas.

Martin, a 2018 graduate of Edwardsville High School, and described as "the glue" for the University of Iowa's team that played in the NCAA tournament championship game twice, was drafted in the second round - 18th overall - by the two-time defending Women's National Basketball Association champions Las Vegas Aces in the WNBA draft Monday night at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn, N.Y.

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Martin, who was a key part of the Hawkeyes' run to back-to-back NCAA championship games, where Iowa lost to LSU in 2023, and to South Carolina on Apr. 7, playing alongside Caitlin Clark, who broke the all-time NCAA scoring record for men or women and is already being considered at one of the greatest players ever, regardless of gender.

As expected, Clark was taken in the number one spot by the Indiana Fever. and is expected to be the face of the league when the regular season starts in early May.

Martin herself had a very successful season, averaging 13.1 points, 6,8 rebounds, and 2.8 assists-per-game. In her junior year in 2022-23, she averaged 7.7 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 3.6 assists-per-game. In Martin's years at Iowa, he Hawkeyes went 132-37, won three straight Big Ten tournament titles, and the 2022 Big Ten regular season crown. They appeared in four straight NCAA Tournaments, going to the Sweet Sixteen in 2021, and the second round in 2022 before going to two consecutive finals.

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Martin brings many great qualities to the court, and she'll do the same for the Aces, who won the WNBA championship the last two seasons, winning over the Connecticut Sun in 2022, then won over the New York Liberty last season, both series-ending 3-1, in a best-of-five final.

"Playing in the shadow of Caitlin Clark her entire career, Martin is a smart, team-first player who was essentially a spot-up shooter and defender her first four years," said ESPN women's basketball analyst Charlie Creme in a piece on ESPN.com. "She showcased herself a bit more this season, with significant jumps in scoring, rebounds, and field goal percentage."

Creme feels that Martin will enjoy success in the WNBA, and knows how to be a good role player and teammate.

"If any player in the draft knows how to play with start and take a secondary role, it's Martin," Creme said. "After four seasons with Caitlin Clark at Iowa, Martin will adapt to any role, can defend, and is an opportunistic three-point shooter."

Martin's selection to the Aces climaxed a busy weekend in New York, where she was a part of the final goodbye segment on Saturday Night Live, where Clark appeared on the Weekend Update segment of the show with Colin Jost and Michael Che.

The Aces play their home games at Michelob ULTRA Arena at the Mandalay Bay property on the Las Vegas Strip, and are schedule to open their season on May 14 against the Phoenix Mercury at home.

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