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Northwestern women’s basketball 2020 player reviews: Abi Scheid

The senior captain capped off a great career with a phenomenal, record-setting year.

via NUSports.com

Despite it being cut unceremoniously short, Abi Scheid’s phenomenal senior campaign was just about everything the sharpshooting forward could have asked for.

In her third year as a captain, she led her team to its best season in program history, became a Big Ten Champion, joined an elite group by scoring her 1000th point, set the single-season program record for three-point percentage (by three full percentage points), was selected to the All-Big Ten first team and finished the season ranked second in the nation among qualifying players in shooting percentage from beyond the arc.

Scheid served as an instrumental piece to the team’s success and was one of its most reliable and consistent facets all season long. Both her three-point shooting ability and steady leadership will surely be missed next year.

Stats

The following numbers are taken from HerHoopsStats.com.

Scheid posted an impressive stat line of 11.5 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game over the course of the season. She led the team in three-point shooting, total minutes and minutes per game – proving herself to be one of the most instrumental and reliable pieces of the rotation. As the third leading scorer, she consistently helped carry her team to victory, especially in her seven games with 15+ points.

Shot distribution

The following numbers are taken from HerHoopsStats.com.

Of her 260 total shots from the field, as expected, 153 came from three, and 63.3 percent of her total points were from behind the arc. She grew from a 36 percent three-point shooter at the end of last season to a 40 percent shooter from behind the arc for her career. This season alone, she connected on 49.2 percent of all her field goal attempts and 47.7 percent from behind the arc.

Impressively, Scheid managed her solid offensive production despite a minimal usage rate of just over 15 percent, making the most of her opportunities to the tune of 1.09 points per possession (categorized as a possession ending in a shot attempt, free throw trip, or turnover by the player) and 1.28 points per scoring opportunity.

The Good

Scheid was one of the most effective and impactful players on the team this season. She was unstoppable from behind the arc and helped carry and jump-start her team when it was most needed. Given that she attempted single-digit threes throughout her high school career, the fact she has grown into one of the best three-point shooters in the nation is astounding and is a testament to her determination and skill. She will be leaving a major void for the team to fill next year and will be missed both as a player and as a leader.

The Bad

Overall, there was not much to criticize about Scheid’s season, but if she hopes to play at the next level, she can certainly learn from her handful of off games this season. When she was on, she was unstoppable, but when she was cold (like during the Big Ten tournament matchup against Michigan), she often couldn’t do much on either end to make up for it. However, the more she plays at higher levels, the more consistent she will become.

Offseason Focus

After her impressive senior season, Scheid has become a major topic of discussion in the WNBA Draft. On April 10, she will have the opportunity to take her playing career to the next level and become the first Northwestern player to get drafted since Nia Coffey in 2017. Draft projections see Scheid going 24th overall to the Washington Mystics, the 2019 champions, where she would play alongside the greats like Elena Delle Donne.

“If there’s one thing you need [at the professional level], it’s someone who can shoot the basketball, because it’s sorely lacking sometimes from what I can see,” Joe McKeown said. “When you get a smart, tough kid who can stretch defenses like that and can make open threes, and I’m a WNBA team that’s got great players around her, I’d give her a look.”

The Bottom Line

As McKeown said, every team needs a sharpshooter, and Scheid has proved herself to be just that. She has both the size and ability to potentially play at the next level. As the only center listed as a top-50 three-point shooter in the nation, teams have to be giving her a look heading into April.

Ultimately, we will see what the next month brings, but as of now, despite a tragic and undeserved end to her Northwestern career, Abi Scheid’s future looks bright.