Prep Hoops Star to Remain in Queens, Going to St. John’s

Former St. Francis Prep girls’ varsity standout Skye Owen is now a freshman on the St. John’s University women’s basketball team. (Photo: Courtesy of Brenden Willsch)

For the newest Red Storm women’s basketball recruit, the “Skye’s” the limit.

Skye Owen, a former standout guard for the St. Francis Prep, Fresh Meadows, girls’ varsity basketball team, is about to begin her freshman year at St. John’s University, Jamaica.

The 2022 Prep graduate was a team captain as a senior en route to being nominated to the McDonald’s High School All-American game.

Owen grew up on Staten Island, where she attended St. Theresa School while playing for the parish’s Catholic Youth Organization basketball program. Though St. Francis Prep was a long way from her home, she happily trekked two hours each way through four NYC boroughs since she loved the energy and diversity of the school.

“It seemed like everyone there wanted me to succeed,” said Owen, who woke up at 5 a.m. each morning and didn’t arrive home until 10 p.m. “The basketball team was really good too, and I knew most of them from my AAU team.”

As a sophomore in 2020, Owen had a breakout performance on the biggest stage: the GC- HSAA ‘AA’ diocesan championship game. The Terriers traveled to Brooklyn to play a tough Xaverian H.S., Bay Ridge, squad for the title.

In the fourth quarter, Owen tallied eight of her 12 total points down the stretch and was especially effective from the free-throw line. She added seven rebounds and five assists to help guide the Terriers to a 70-59 victory.

Just a week later, however, the remainder of the postseason was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Owen wound up losing her entire junior season, yet she remained committed to basketball and logged countless hours of individual work to improve her skills for her senior campaign.

All that hard work certainly paid off. As a senior last season, Owen averaged 18.4 points, 7.6 rebounds, 5.2 assists, and 3.3 steals per game and was named GCHSAA All-League and a Tablet All-Star. She was also named to the BlueStar Travel Basketball Team’s list of Top 50 high school players in the nation.

Of course, Division I college scouts took notice. Owen committed to Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, to continue her basketball career. This May, though, Wake Forest fired women’s basketball coach Jen Hoover after 10 seasons following a year in which the Demon Deacons won just four Atlantic Coast Conference games.

Though her spot would be guaranteed with a new coach, Owen decided to reopen her recruitment eligibility this summer. Several schools, including St. John’s, reached out, and the allure of playing closer to home appealed to her.

“I love being close to home because I love the atmosphere,” Owen said. “People I know and my family will be at our games. It makes me feel comfortable. Plus, New York has such great energy.”

Owen now joins another former GCHSAA star, Danielle Patterson, on the Red Storm. Patterson is a sixth-year student-athlete who was a high school All-American at The Mary Louis Academy, Jamaica Estates.

When asked about her goal for her first sea- son, Owen did not hold back:

“Probably to be Big East Freshman of the Year.”

The last time a St. John’s women’s basket- ball player won Big East Conference Freshman of the Year was in 2017-2018, when Qadashah Hoppie accomplished the feat.

All corniness aside, the “Skye” really is the limit for this talented freshman whose sights are already set on a major goal. Odds are that if Owen wins Big East Freshman of the Year, the Johnnies as a team will have had a successful 2022-2023 season.

Contact Jim Mancari via email at