After the Loyola women’s basketball team fell in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) tournament March 11, senior forward Allison Day and senior guard Janae Gonzales entered the transfer portal as confirmed by Loyola Athletics March 21. Sophomore guard Kaylen Evans has also reportedly entered the portal.
With the addition of the NCAA’s rule allowing athletes to take an extra year of eligibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Day and Gonzales still have one more year of play allowed. They are also not the only players in recent history to transfer from Loyola in their final year, as former Rambler and star guard Abby O’Connor transferred to Gonzaga University for her senior year in the 2020-2021 season.
Day and Gonzales have been crucial to head coach Kate Achter’s program, with Day succeeding close to the basket while Gonzales specializes in three-pointers. With the pair possibly leaving Loyola, Achter could have a major gap to fill on her team before next season.
During her career at Loyola, Day crafted an impressive resume, being selected to the First Team All-MVC in the 2020-21 season, the MVC Scholar-Athlete Team twice, while also being named an Honorable Mention on the MVC First Team this season. This season, Day also joined the program’s 1,000-point club, cementing herself in program history.
Day led the Ramblers’ offense by averaging 10.3 points per game this season while shooting 42% from the floor. However, Day’s best season came in 2020-21 when she scored 11.7 points per game on average while grabbing 6.9 rebounds per game.
Day said in a statement to The Phoenix she entered the transfer portal to further develop her game to be able to play overseas or coach, adding that she is grateful that Achter is helping her through the process.
“I want to play overseas and coach and I believe playing in a different program will add to my experiences, my development as a player, and add to my resume,” Day said. “I have loved my time at Loyola and am grateful for the opportunity to play here and earn a great education. Coach Kate and all of the assistants have been supportive and are helping me with the process in whatever way they can.”
While Day’s production increased, Gonzales’ production fell each season. During the 2018-2019 season — when she was named to the MVC All-Freshman Team — she averaged 11.4 points per game while only averaging 3.9 points per game this season. Gonzales’ minutes per game also fell from 29.6 minutes per game in the 2018-19 season to just 12.4 minutes per game this season. Gonzales denied a request for comment.
The pair’s entrance into the transfer portal was unexpected after Loyola’s successful season, with the team’s 18 wins being the most for the Ramblers since the 1988-89 season. The Phoenix contacted Day and Gonzales, but no reason has been given by either player for their decision to enter the transfer portal.