Leilani Mitchell: Mormon Athlete
Leilani Mitchell is a 5-foot-5-inch point guard professional basketball player and has played with the WNBA. She has also played for teams in Croatia, France, and Australia. She currently plays for the Sydney Uni Flames with the WNBL.
She has dual citizenship in Australia and the United States, and represented Australia at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Her mother was an Australian native of Asian descent.) Mitchell averaged 11.3 points per game and 4.5 assists per game, while shooting 55.6 percent from the three-point line. The team placed fifth overall, with a narrow loss in the quarterfinals. During the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Australia advanced to the quarterfinals and lost to the United States, placing eighth overall.
She was born on June 15, 1985, in Richland, Washington. In four consecutive years, she led Kennewick High School to state championship games, including Kennewick's title-winning season of 2000. She played at the University of Idaho until her senior year where she had one season with the University of Utah. She won five Mountain West Conference Player of the Week awards, more than any other player in the MWC. She finished her college career one of only six NCAA Division I players since 1999–2000 to compile 2,000 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists, and 300 steals in her career. Mitchell was selected in the second round (25th overall) of the 2008 WNBA draft by the Phoenix Mercury and was traded that year to the New York Liberty where she played for six seasons.
Mitchell is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.