BYRON, Minn. — With nearly three minutes left in Kansas State's dominating game over No. 14 Oklahoma, Ayoka Lee broke the NCAA Women's Basketball Division 1 single-game scoring record, which helped turn a 94-65 victory for the Wildcats.
Lee is also tied with 1998-2000's Olga Firsova for the second tallest player in program history.
The Minnesota native broke her own record Sunday by nearly 20 points. She dropped 43 points on the first game of the season against Central Arkansas.
The six-foot-six junior started her Kansas State career as a freshman, then had a redshirt year. She broke freshman records for rebounds, rebounds per game, blocks, blocks per game and for double-doubles.
She was rated as number two freshman in the nation in 2019-20.
Before attending Kansas State, her roots hail from Minnesota, where she was ranked 38th in the nation by ESPNW Hoopgurlz for her performance at Byron High School.
Lee's former high school basketball coach, Darren Nelson, watched Sunday as she scored the record-setting 61 points.
"She's just a tremendous kid that's really worked hard to get where she's at," Nelson said. "In fact, I will tell you this, she did not play basketball until she was in seventh grade. That was her first year of organized basketball, you know, whereas most kids now are starting in the elementary grades."
He says she quickly advanced, playing varsity from freshman through senior year. He remembers the day she decided where to play next.
"She really was drawn to Kansas State and really liked it when she visited there and the day she verbally committed she did send me a text," Nelson said.
Now the messages continue to come in after Sunday's record-setting win.
"I sent her a text immediately after the game and it took a while to respond because I'm sure she was responding to many, many texts after the game but I just said, 'Awesome. I watched the whole game, you're in the record books, it's just awesome to see. Keep working hard, keep dominating,'" Nelson said. "She's doing phenomenal things."
The daughter of Robin Lee and Kolloh Nimley in Bryon, Minnesota, she has two siblings: Ahymad and Ahjany. She graduated with her undergrad in psychology and is currently pursuing a master's in couple and family therapy.
While attending Byron, Lee was received a letter in volleyball three times and a two in track and field.
She dominated the court for basketball, averaging 26.6 points, 15.7 rebounds and 5.5 blocks in her senior year.
She finished her high school career with 2,287 points, 1,448 rebounds and 461 blocks, breaking records in single-game, season and career scoring.
She is the 12th player in K-state WBB history coming from the state of Minnesota and currently plays with Rachel Ranke, who is also from Minnesota.
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