Faith Randolph was one of the area’s top defenders last season. (John McDonnell/THE WASHINGTON POST)

Ryan stepped down in March after 34 seasons, and her successor Joanne Boyle made Randolph a priority, pushing hard for the 5-foot-10 guard. Randolph committed Wednesday to Virginia, choosing the Cavaliers over James Madison, Pittsburgh and Villanova.

“When I came on campus, it felt the most comfortable for me and the coaching staff at Virginia; they seem very down to earth and they had great ideas of building a program at Virginia,” Randolph said. “And it’s a great school and coach Boyle is going to help the program and I wanted to be a part of that.”

Randolph’s familiarity with central Virginia and the school were also factors, she said. Her older sister, Tiffany, was a student at Virginia nearly a decade ago and Randolph’s grandmother lives about an hour from the Charlottesville campus. “I’m used to that area,” she said.

Last season, Randolph was the top defender and leading scorer for Good Counsel, the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference runner-ups. She averaged 13.5 points, 4 rebounds and 2.2 assists and shot 81 percent from the foul line.

After Ryan stepped down, some recruits took back their commitments to Virginia, including Stafford rising senior forward Merritt Hempe who committed to Georgia in late June. But despite that, Randolph said she was excited to help build something with the new coaching staff.

“I feel like there is going to be some great changes and great upbringing of Virginia,” Randolph said.