|Marina Solopova joins Kosice having been one of the revelations of the season with VICI Aistes|
Major Moves: Zirkova Switch To UMMC, Langhorne And Solopova Join Kosice
Good Angels Kosice and UMMC Ekaterinburg have had major changes in their rosters less than a week before the start of the EuroLeague Women Eighth-Final play-offs.
The Slovakian giants Kosice have parted with Charde Houston and signed American center Crystal Langhorne, while also transferring Zuzana Zirkova to Ekaterinburg.
Kosice have also brought in Lithuania international Marina Solopova from VICI Aistes.
Good Angels are getting a very good player judging from Solopova's last performance in the EuroLeague Women Qualifying Round, a VICI Aistes victory over Tarbes.
Solopova, who turns 21 next month, hit four of eight shots from long range and finished with a season-high 28 points.
The player movement, according to Kosice General Manager Daniel Jendrichovsky, was unexpected and happened very quickly.
"On Sunday," he said, "we received a request from Ekaterinburg to release Zuzana Zirkova.
"As regarding our key player, the soul of the team, we twice in one day refused because her loss would be serious for our club.
"On Sunday night we have got such an attractive offer, which was difficult to refuse.
|Zuzana Zirkova leaves Slovakia to add her name to the already full of talent Ekaterinburg roster|
"It is financially advantageous for our club, also for Zuzana, who should have fantastic conditions in Ekaterinburg."
The financial gains have allowed Good Angels to also bring in Langhorne, who played the first eight games of the EuroLeague Women Qualifying Round with UMMC.
"We got so much money that among our players will also be Lithuanian Marina Solopova, who comes from Kaunas," Jendrichovsky said.
The two players are expected to be in uniform on Wednesday night for the Slovakian team game against Presov.
The loss of Zirkova will be a blow to the Kosice fans as she is Slovakia's most famous player and had only come back to the club for the second time in her career last summer after spending several seasons with Frisco Sika Brno.
Jendrichovsky promised: "We will do everything we can to get past the French club Bourges."
As for Ekaterinburg, Jendrichovsky said everything has gone smoothly for one very important reason.
"The general manager of the club, Maxim Ryabkov, is my personal friend," he said.
"It is to his credit."
For the Zirkova fans that want to see her back in a Kosice uniform, she could return to Good Angels when her three-month deal runs out at Ekaterinburg.
Ros Swoop For Reis
Ros Casares have signed Portuguese center Sonia Reis for the remainder of the season.
Reis averaged 11.8 points and five rebounds per game in 15 Liga Femenina games this season with Girona.
A leading player in her national team, Reis, who turns 27 on Thursday, averaged 24 points and 9.3 rebounds per game last year in EuroBasket Women Division B for Portugal.