Wandersee Eyes Top Of Women's Hoops Preseason Team
The fourth-leading scorer in the GNAC at 14.8 points per game, Wandersee led the Seawolves to the NCAA West Regional final last season.
The fourth-leading scorer in the GNAC at 14.8 points per game, Wandersee led the Seawolves to the NCAA West Regional final last season.

Friday, October 19, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. – Fresh off a season in which she led Alaska Anchorage in points, rebounds and blocks, senior Hannah Wandersee leads all selections to the 2018-19 Great Northwest Athletic Conference’s Women’s Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team.

Wandersee, a Second Team All-West Region selection a year ago, was named by the GNAC coaches as the conference’s Preseason Player of the Year after leading the Seawolves to a 27-5 record and a trip to the Sweet Sixteen last March. The Kodiak, Alaska native received eight first-place votes from the coaches after averaging 14.8 points and 6.3 rebounds last season.

Point guard Yazmeen Goo joins Wandersee as the other UAA representative on this year’s preseason team. Goo earned Honorable Mention All-GNAC recognition last season in her first season as a starter, scoring at a clip of 8.5 points per game. Both Wandersee and Goo were unanimous selections by the GNAC coaches.

No team placed more players on the Preseason All-Conference Team than Northwest Nazarene.

The Nighthawks are led by one of just two players to receive first-place votes from the conference coaches, senior Danielle Jardine. Her 11.5 points per game ranked second on an NNU team that won 22 games and tied Alaska Anchorage for the GNAC regular season title. The senior also led the GNAC in field goal percentage at 57.9 percent and was one of eight unanimous picks by the GNAC coaches.

Joining Jardine are senior guards Ellie Logan and McKenna Walker. Walker was one of three Nighthawks to finish last year scoring in double figures at an 11 points per game clip while Logan, who did not play in 2017-18, led the team in scoring two years ago (12.3 points per game).

Led by unanimous selection Alexis Pana, Central Washington placed two representatives on the Preseason All-Conference Team. The junior guard earned Honorable Mention All-GNAC honors a year ago, averaging 10.1 points per game on a sharp 42.3 shooting percentage from three-point range. Teammate Sadie Mensing comes fresh off a season in which the guard led the Wildcats with 12.3 points per game. Mensing started all 29 games while also pulling down 4.4 rebounds per game.

Simon Fraser also had a pair of selections in forwards Sophie Swant and Ozi Nwabuko. Swant was a Second Team All-GNAC performer last season, averaging 14.2 points per game. That mark led an SFU roster that finished the season with four victories in its final five regular-season contests.

Looking to build on a standout freshman season will be Nwabuko, the Port Coquitlam, B.C. product. The forward did not play in 2017-18 but finished her first year on Burnaby Mountain with 8.4 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. She was also named the GNAC Freshman of the Year in the 2016-17 season.

Saint Martin’s is represented by guards Makenna Schultz and Saniah Simpson-Patu. Schultz, a Lacey-native, averaged 13.3 points per game in 2017-18 and is back for her third season with the Saints. Simpson-Patu is entering her sophomore campaign after tying for first in scoring last season at 14.1 points per game.

Concordia, Western Washington, Montana State Billings and Seattle Pacific rounded out the voting with one player from each school.

The lone Cavaliers’ representative is senior Bailey Cartwright, making the team as a unanimous selection. The team’s leading returning scorer, Cartwright finished last season with 13.8 points per game. The forward figures to be leaned on heavily once again as she enters her final year in Portland.

After being named the GNAC Newcomer of the Year last season, Western Washington’s Dani Iwami followed up that honor with a nod from the conference coaches. The Hawaii Pacific transfer did a little bit of everything in her first season up in Bellingham, peppering the stat sheet with an average of 9.4 points, four assists and 2.7 rebounds per game. Expectations figure to be high for the junior as she was a unanimous pick for the team.

Joining those in the unanimous selection ranks is Montana State Billings senior Vanessa Stavish. Following in the footsteps of a pair of sensational seniors that have departed due to graduation, the Frenchtown, Montana native is the team’s leading returning scorer from a group that won 25 games and advanced to the Elite Eight last March.

Rounding out the voting is Seattle Pacific guard Riley Evans. A unanimous pick by the conference coaches, Evans averaged 4.8 points per game on a loaded Falcons roster last season. The senior led SPU with 18 points in the GNAC Championships final against the Yellowjackets and will look to carry some of that momentum into the 2018-19 campaign.

Western Washington opens the 2018-19 season for GNAC teams on Mon., Oct. 22, when it hosts Trinity Western in an exhibition contest. The conference’s regular season opener is slated for Nov. 7 when Saint Martin’s battles Pacific Lutheran at Marcus Pavilion in Lacey.

Preseason Player of the Year: Hannah Wandersee, Alaska Anchorage

Name School Pos. Ht. Yr. Hometown (Previous School)
* Hannah Wandersee Alaska Anchorage F/C 6-2 Sr. Kodiak, Alaska (Kodiak)
* Bailey Cartwright Concordia F 6-1 Sr. Pasco, Wash. (Chiawana)
* Danielle Jardine Northwest Nazarene F 5-10 Sr. Nampa, Idaho (Nampa)
* Alexis Pana Central Washington G 5-9 Jr. Hilo, Hawaii (Hilo)
Sophie Swant Simon Fraser F 5-11 Sr. North Vancouver, B.C. (Argyle)
* Yazmeen Goo Alaska Anchorage G 5-10 Jr. Daly City, Calif. (Westmoor)
Ellie Logan Northwest Nazarene G 5-9 Sr. Fossil, Ore. (Condon-Wheeler)
* Dani Iwami Western Washington G 5-7 Jr. Seal Beach, Calif.
(Hawaii Pacific Univ.)
McKenna Walker Northwest Nazarene G 5-9 Sr. Moses Lake, Wash. (Moses Lake)
Saniah Simpson-Patu Saint Martin's G/F 5-10 So. Las Vegas, Nev. (Rainier Beach)
* Vanessa Stavish Montana State Billings F 6-0 Sr. Frenchtown, Mont. (Frenchtown)
Ozi Nwabuko Simon Fraser F 5-11 So. Port Coquitlam, B.C. (Riverside)
Sadie Mensing Central Washington G 5-9 Sr. Snohomish, Wash. (Glacier Peak)
* Riley Evans Seattle Pacific G 5-10 Sr. Terrigal, Australia
(St. Joseph's Catholic)
Makenna Schultz Saint Martin's G 5-2 Jr. Lacey, Wash. (River Ridge)

* - Unanimous Selection