2024 WNBA Draft: Seattle Storm select Indiana women's basketball forward Mackenzie Holmes

The Seattle Storm drafted Indiana women's basketball forward Mackenzie Holmes with the No. 2 pick in the third round (No. 26th overall pick) of the 2024 WNBA Draft on Monday night.

Holmes follows in the footsteps of her former teammates Grace Berger and Ali Patberg. Berger made history last season as the highest selection in program history when the Indiana Fever drafted her with the No. 7 overall pick. Patberg was drafted by the Fever a year earlier.

This is the first time in program history IU had players drafted in three consecutive years.

In the weeks leading up to the draft, Holmes announced she was undergoing a medical procedure to fix a reoccurring knee injury that will sideline her during the 2024 season. The forward's knee would slide in and out of place going back to the early days of her high school career.

More: Tearful Mackenzie Holmes: 'I'm here for five years because I loved being a Hoosier'

"We see it as a developmental piece and someone who we can bring in next year who is going to have an offseason to go through the rehab process, to also have some skill development time," Seattle Storm general manager Talisa Rhea said in a virtual press conference after the draft. "But I think she's a really fundamentally player, versatile big. Plays like how we like to play — can guard, can stretch out and continue work on her 3-point shot. We were excited she was there at 26."

Holmes aggravated the injury in the team's season finale — an injury scare that cast a shadow over the Senior Day festivities planned to honor her class — and was limited to just four minutes in a loss in the Big Ten quarterfinals to Michigan.

Holmes returned to form in the NCAA tournament — she bullied Fairfield as a rim protector and helped IU overcome a 64-60 deficit in the final minutes against Oklahoma in the second round. The round of 32 ended with Holmes celebrating amidst the student section as she did a few years earlier.

"My last moments in Assembly Hall I wanted to spend with them," Holmes said.

Indiana's season ended with a 79-75 loss against the No. 1 overall seed South Carolina. It was the closest game the eventual undefeated NCAA champions played in the tournament.

More: 'This is her place': Indiana women's Mackenzie Holmes has iconic March Madness moment

Holmes wrapped up her career as one of the most decorated players in program history. She was the Hoosiers first ever first-team All-American, was an All-Big Ten selection four times (she made the first-team three times) and was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in 2022-23.

She set the program’s all-time scoring record averaging 17.2 points in her career while shooting 63.9% from the field and put up 26 double-doubles in 147 games played (116) starts in five seasons. As a fifth-year senior, she averaged 19.8 points, 6.8 rebounds and led the Big Ten with a 65% shooting percentage.

“I just pray that any high schooler that is looking at colleges that they pick a school that they feel the same way that I have felt about Indiana,” Holmes said, through tears after the loss to South Carolina. “I know the transfer portal is huge right now, but I'm here for five years because I loved being a Hoosier, and I loved every second.”

Indiana women's basketball WNBA draft history

  • 2024: Mackenzie Holmes, Seattle Storm: 3rd round, No. 26 overall

  • 2023: Grace Berger; Indiana Fever: 1st round, No. 7 overall

  • 2022: Ali Patberg, Indiana Fever: 3rd round, No. 34 overall

  • 2011: Jori Davis, Indiana Fever: 3rd round, No. 33 overall

  • 2002: Jill Chapman, Detroit Shock: 2nd round, No. 21 overall

  • 1998: Quacy Barnes, Sacramento Monarchs: 3rd round, No. 22 overall

Michael Niziolek is the Indiana beat reporter for The Bloomington Herald-Times. You can follow him on X @michaelniziolek and read all his coverage by clicking here.

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Times: Seattle Storm select Mackenzie Holmes in 3rd round of 2024 WNBA Draft