Former West Virginia University center Yelena Leuchanka is one of 12 players to make the WNBA’s Charlotte Sting opening-day roster.

Signed as a free agent in mid-April, the 6-5 native of Gomel, Belarus, is one of four rookies the club retained. Charlotte opens its season last Saturday with an 83-82 home loss to Chicago.

Leuchanka is the second Mountaineer to ever make a WNBA team. Guard Yolanda Paige (200-2005) became the first when drafted in the second round by the Indiana Fever last year.

However, Paige has been released after being with two teams.

In her Mountaineer career, Leuchanka averaged 7.1 points and 6.2 rebounds in only 42 games.

She missed the better part of two years (2003-04; 2004-05) with consecutive and separate season-ending knee injuries.

Leuchanka played an integral part of WVU’s run to the 2006 Big East championship game in March.

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