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Duke women’s basketball’s Kyra Lambert enters transfer portal

Lambert (right) had been one of the key sparks for Duke's turnaround this season.
Lambert (right) had been one of the key sparks for Duke's turnaround this season.

After five years in Durham that included a robbed NCAA tournament appearance by the COVID-19 pandemic and two years spent rehabbing torn ACLs, point guard Kyra Lambert will be transferring from Duke.

Lambert, a three-time captain, posted a farewell on Instagram Friday night.

“I’m extremely proud of what we accomplished this year,” Lambert told The Chronicle. “I’ll be graduating with my Master’s in May and I have another year to play so I’ve decided there’s not another academic avenue that I want to pursue at Duke. Therefore, I’m going to use my extra year of eligibility somewhere else.”

Lambert came into Duke a consensus top-10 recruit and became a starter by the end of her freshman year. Near the end of her sophomore campaign, the Texas native suffered a torn ACL that kept her out of action in her junior season. She entered the following year as a preseason candidate for the Nancy Lieberman Award, given to the nation's top point guard, before another ACL tear took that season away as well. 

The Samuel Clemens High School product returned this past season against High Point, hitting one of the most memorable shots in recent Blue Devil history, and had reestablished herself in the starting lineup by mid-December. Her elite defense and torrid shooting—45 percent from the field, 41 percent from three since the team's loss at Clemson Jan. 19—helped lead a turnaround that likely would have resulted in an NCAA tournament bid for Duke had coronavirus concerns not forced the NCAA to cancel all winter and spring championships.

“Looking back on my time at Duke I see growth,” Lambert said. “Both in the classroom and on the court I feel like Duke has challenged me and has forced me to grow in a lot of ways.”


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