Wagner Coming Home to Play for Women's Basketball Team

May 1, 2002

EUGENE, Ore. - Chelsea Wagner, a Springfield native who set a freshman record for 3-pointers last year at Hawai`i, will return to Oregon to play for Bev Smith, the second-year women's basketball coach announced Wednesday.

A 2001 graduate of Springfield High School where she was a Street & Smith's honorable mention All-American her junior and senior years, Wagner averaged 8.6 points and 3.2 rebounds per game for Hawai`i last season. A 5-foot-10 guard, she will redshirt in 2002-03 because of NCAA transfer rules and will be eligible to play in 2003-04.

'We're excited to have Chelsea come to Oregon,' Smith said. 'First of all, she's a great student-athlete who has proven herself at the University of Hawa`i. Second, the fact she's a Eugene-Springfield raised student-athlete is great for our community and they will enjoy seeing her contribute to this program.'

Wagner, who nailed a freshman school-record 37-of-115 (32 percent) 3-pointers, helped the Rainbow Wahine to a 23-8 record. Their season ended with a 62-50 loss at Oregon State in the WNIT first round, despite Wagner scoring 16 points and hitting four 3-pointers.

Wagner also shot 37 percent (84-of-228) from the field and 76 percent (45-of-59) from the foul line. She set a season-high with 21 points against Tulsa and also dropped in 18 points at No. 7-ranked Louisiana Tech. Wagner started in Hawai`i's last 14 games, averaging a team-high 12.6 points per game.

'It just gives us a player who's solid in the guard position,' said Smith, whose Ducks will lose three guards to graduation - Alissa Edwards, Kourtney Shreve and All-American Shaquala Williams - after next season. 'She'll make our practices very competitive and healthy. She'll provide us with three solid years after her redshirt year is over. She's a 2 and 3 player who can really shoot the ball and make things happen.'

A four-year letterwinner in basketball and track at Springfield High, Wagner earned the state's Player of the Year honors from the Oregonian and USA Today following her senior year in which she averaged 21.1 points, 8.2 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game. She also was an All-Midwestern League selection four straight years.

Wagner joins 5-foot-8 point guard Corrie Mizusawa, a transfer from Saint Mary's, and 6-foot-3 post player Carolyn Ganes (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) in Oregon's 2002-03 recruiting class.

Oregon finished 22-13 last season and advanced to its ninth straight postseason tournament, capturing the WNIT championship with a 54-52 win over Houston.

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