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Former Hermiston Star Wins NCAA, ESPN State Farm 3-Point Shootout – Now Headed for WNBA

Shoni Schimmel
(courtesy of ncaa.com)

Shoni Schimmel, a former basketball star for the Hermiston Bulldogs, and standout All-American for Louisville,  won the NCAA State Farm 3-point shootout Saturday. Not only did she win the women’s title, but ALSO beat the men’s champ too!

For a number of years, State Farm and the NCAA have partnered for the State Farm Shootout and Slam Dunk Competition, televised nationally on ESPN.   Similar to the NBA All-Star weekend, the event gathers the top shooters and dunkers, who compete during the Final Four Weekend to determine who’s the best.

Based upon season and career 3-point shooting statistics,  the best gunners in men’s and women’s college basketkball compete, as do the most acrobatic dunkers on the men’s side..    Schimmel not only won the women’s title but also won the overall title, beating Baylor’s Brady Heslip.   She bested a field that included noted players from Duke, and other top universities.   She then beat Heslip by scoring 22 points to his 17.

Schimmel, a senior, has been described as the face of the Louisville Cardinal’s womens basketball program, and will leave VERY big shoes to fill.  She leaves the school as the #2 all-time scorer in university history, and it’s best ever 3-point gunner.

The State Farm Shootout is a nationally televised event that allowed millions of fans across the country to see players they might not have followed during the regular season.  Schimmel cooly drained shot after shot to win all her rounds and the two finals.

Schimmel, who was born on the Umatilla, OR Indian Reservation, is a Native American who led Hermiston to 4th and 2nd. place finishes at state as a freshman and sophomore.  She then moved to Portland, and finished her career at Franklin High School.  While at Hermiston, she was named Intermountain Conference Player of the Year both years, and as a senior was ranked as the 8th best basketball prospect by ESPN’s Top 100!.

ESPN and professional basketball experts say she will be one of the first players taken later this spring in the WNBA draft, and many expect her to have a thriving professional career.  Great to see an athlete from our area achieve such great success!

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