WAYNE – As the winter sports competition began for the Wayne State College women’s basketball team nearly two weeks ago, recruiting never stops as three student-athletes signed their national letters of intent.
Announced Monday afternoon by the Wayne State Athletics Office and by head women’s basketball coach Chris Kielsmeier, the three-incoming freshman took part in the NCAA early signing period to continue their academic and athletic careers at WSC in 2018-19.
Signing national letters of intent to play for the Wildcats are Isabelle Gradwell from Marshalltown, Iowa, Kylie Hammer of Wayne and Autumn Mlinar of Maple Grove, Minnesota.
Isabelle Gradwell is a 6-0 guard/forward from West Marshall High School in Iowa where she is a four-year starter. Last season, she averaged 17.1 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.1 steals and 1.4 blocks per game to earn Iowa Class 3A Second Team All-State honors from the Iowa Newspaper Association and Third Team All-State accolades from the Iowa Coaches Association to go with All-Region and All-North Iowa Cedar League honors. Gradwell also excels in track and field where she was a state finalist in the Class 2A 100-meter hurdles.
Kylie Hammer is a 5-6 point guard from Wayne High School where she is a multi-sport standout in volleyball, basketball and track and field. As a junior, Hammer averaged 20.2 points and 5.0 rebounds per game to earn Lincoln Journal Star Class C-1 Second Team All-State honors and Norfolk Daily New Elite 8 All-Area Team. She already surpassed the 1,000-point mark and was Nebraska’s all-class leading scorer last season and is a three-time All-Mid States Conference selection. In track and field, Hammer is a six-time state medalist that includes a second-place finish in the long jump (17′ 2 ¼”) and sixth place finish in the triple jump (34′ 10 ¼”) last spring as a junior. Hammer is also a two-time All-Mid State Conference First Team selection in volleyball for the Blue Devils.
Autumn Mlinar is a 5-11 wing from Maple Grove High School in Minnesota. A three-year starter in basketball, Mlinar averaged 12.3 points and 4.8 rebounds per game during her high school career and was a First Team All-Northwest Suburban Conference selection. She has also played club ball for North Tartan and was named to the Super 100 Seniors list by Breakdown USA.
The Wildcats were 23-7 last season and second in the NSIC South Division with a 16-6 league mark. Five games into their 2017-18 campaign, WSC is currently 3-2 and will next host Graceland University on Thursday at 7 p.m.