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Kate Martin earning high compliments from Las Vegas Aces star Kelsey Plum

Kate Martin is making waves bigger than many second-round WNBA draft picks do. That is in part due to how she endeared herself to Iowa Hawkeye fans during her career in Iowa City by playing hard-nosed basketball and always playing hard.

Fighting for a roster spot in the WNBA is no easy task as each team only carries 12 players. As a second-round pick, Martin is a bit of a longshot to make the roster, but she is hanging around.

Her new teammates are taking notice as well. The Las Vegas Aces have star power, guard Kelsey Plum, and one of the game’s best head coaches, Becky Hammon. Both are giving Martin flowers already.

“Kate Martin is awesome. Kate Martin picks up things so quickly; she’s an amazing sponge. I think Becky nicknamed her Kate ‘Money’ Martin. I think that’s gonna stick.

“And when I say ‘money,’ it’s not just about scoring and stuff, she’s just in the right place at the right time. She just makes people better. And that’s what Becky values, that’s what our coaching staff values and that’s why she’s gonna be a great asset to our team,” Plum said of the rookie from Iowa.

Money is an accurate term for Kate Martin. At times during the Hawkeyes’ run in the NCAA Tournament, she had to take the basketball and get a bucket when Iowa needed it, and she never backed down from the moment.

Martin enjoyed a career year in her final season with the Hawkeyes, averaging 13.1 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. The Edwardsville, Illinois, native shot 50.7% from the field and 37% from 3-point range.

With the WNBA regular season set to tip off on Tuesday, May 14, Martin is inching closer and closer to having her ticket punched and solidifying her spot as a member of the Las Vegas Aces.

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Story originally appeared on Hawkeyes Wire