The wait wasn’t a long one for Nyara Sabally.

With the fifth pick in Monday night’s 2022 WNBA Draft, the New York Liberty selected the former Oregon forward, reuniting her with former teammate Sabrina Ionescu.

The Liberty finished the 2021 season 12-20, eliminated in the first round of the WNBA Playoffs by Phoenix.

Sabally is the fourth Oregon player in program history to be taken in the first round of the WNBA Draft. After only eight selections total and none in the first round over the league’s first 23 seasons, all four of those first-round selections have come in the last three years. Sabally’s sister, Satou, was drafted second overall to Dallas in 2020 while Ruthy Hebard went eighth to Chicago.

Sabally and Ionescu reuniting in The Big Apple is an exciting proposition.

Despite just 47 total appearances for Oregon over four years in the program, Sabally has come on strong in the last two seasons and put early knee problems in the rearview mirror. An All-Pac-12 selection in each of the last two seasons, Sabally elevated her play in 2021-22.

She led the Ducks in scoring at over 15 points a game, led the team in rebounding (7.8 boards), led the team in blocks (1.4), led the team in free throw attempts, finished behind only Maddie Scherr for the team lead in steals (1.4), and finished with the third-highest shooting clip. Sabally also proved more than capable at the free throw line, hitting 73% of her makes on five attempts a game.

In last month’s NCAA Tournament, despite a double-overtime loss to Belmont, Sabally was brilliant. She scored 31 points in 48 minutes, grabbed 12 rebounds, blocked seven shots, picked up three steals, and shot 50% from the field.

New York was clearly impressed.

Sabally’s knee injury kept her off the floor for Ionescu’s last season in Eugene. Now they’ll get the chance to actually share a court.