The polls are closed and the results are in. A mind-boggling 74,824 votes (that’s like ten times the capacity of Welsh-Ryan Arena and over one-and-a-half Ryan Fields) were cast in the final showdown between field hockey’s Gretchen Scheuermann and tennis’ Katrina Adams. It was a spectacle rivaling the likes of the Super Bowl or, more accurately, the Daily Northwestern-Inside NU quarterly basketball game, in terms of tension and drama.
The two went back and forth for much of the voting period, stretching from Thursday to Monday night, but Scheuermann’s strong weekend surge was enough to hold Adams off to secure the title. Ultimately, the final vote tally was 39,938 to 34,886, a 53 percent to 47 percent margin.
Most readers are perhaps familiar, if not well-acquainted, with Scheuermann by now. The 2000 Northwestern Athletic Hall of Fame inductee was the 1994 Big Ten Field Hockey Conference Player of the Year and Offensive MVP as well as the Honda Sports Award field hockey recipient for top player in the nation.
With a large and devoted fanbase, Scheuermann, a 5-seed, defeated 12-seed Ralph Baker and 13-seed Frank Ehmann in the first two rounds, but the Vermont native put the rest of the competition on notice by taking down one-seed John Shurna in the Sweet Sixteen. She avoided a letdown by seeing off fellow field hockey star Chelsea Armstrong in the Elite Eight to secure the Central Region title and a spot in the Final Four. Perhaps her toughest opponent was Pat Fitzgerald, whom she absolutely rolled over en route to defeating Adams and winning the entire thing.
Congratulations to Gretchen Scheuermann on the well-deserved title of Northwestern’s greatest athletes, as determined by our bracket’s voting. We here at Inside NU hope readers had fun learning about and voting for some of these athletes lost in history amidst this chaotic time.