One of the better aspects of women’s college basketball is that the best players don’t leave after one year. Instead, they continue to develop and grow with their team for four years.
The #12 ranked Iowa Hawkeyes (22-6, 13-4) have three of these talented seniors who will play their last home game on Sunday as they take on Northwestern (16-12, 9-8) at 3 pm.
As Maryland defeated Illinois on Saturday and clinched the Big Ten regular season title, this game will be all about the seniors. If you have a chance to get to Carver, come out and support the seniors and the team as they try to go a perfect 15-0 at home on the season. If you can’t make it to the game, check the team out on the Big Ten Network.
Without further ado, here are the seniors and some of their incredible highlights courtesy of the Iowa Women’s Basketball Media Guide.
- Davis is a 5’3” guard from Flint, Michigan.
- She is a health and human physiology major.
- Named Michigan Miss Basketball by the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan and the Detroit Free Press in 2015.
- Named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team.
- As a sophomore, Davis Started 23 contests before being sidelined with a torn ACL. She scored in double digits in 14 games and recorded four or more assists in 15 games. Davis also led team in free throw shooting percentage.
- While a junior, Davis once again ran into knee injuries and only played in 12 games. She averaged 9.7 points, 5.2 assists, and 3.2 rebounds per game.
- Fully healthy as a senior, Davis has started all 28 games and has averaged 10.9 points, 4.2 assists, and 2.9 rebounds per game. She is shooting .860 from the free throw line and has made 44 three-pointers, shooting at a .389 percent.
- With 940 points in her career, Davis has a shot at the exclusive 1,000 point club if the Hawkeyes can have a deep postseason run.
- Davis is currently eighth all-time in assists for the Hawkeyes.
- Gustafson is a 6’3” forward from South Shore High School in Port Wing, Wisconsin.
- She is a business major.
- Ranked No. 12 at her position and was a Top 100 recruit by ESPN and is the all-time scoring leader in Wisconsin, and the only player in state history to eclipse 3,000 points
- As a freshman, Gustafson was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team and compiled the third-most blocks (58), fourth-most rebounds (225), and seventh-most points (352) of all freshmen in program history.
- Her sophomore season was even better as she was named first team All-Big Ten while registering 18 double-doubles.
- Gustafson was named Big Ten Player of the Year as a junior and was named to seven different All-American teams. She finished the year ranked in the top-9 nationally in nine statistical categories. She led the nation in points per game (25.7), field goal percentage (67.1), and field goals made (320), ranked third in double-double (28) and total points (823), fourth in defensive rebounds per game (9), fifth in rebounds per game (12.8), sixth in total rebounds (411), and ninth in free throws made (183). She was one of only two NCAA women’s basketball players in the last 10 years to average 24 or more points and 12 or more rebounds (Chiney Ogwumike, 2014) and she was the only player in the country that averaged over 25 points per game.
- Her senior season is going pretty well. While she deserves National Player of the Year honors, it’s always tough to get the recognition in the midwest. She’s made her claim for the top award as she is averaging 27.4 points and 13.3 rebounds per game. She has 48 blocks and is shooting .704 from the field!
- Gustafson’s name is etched at the top of the Iowa record book and the numbers will continue to grow. Currently she is the all-time leading scorer in men’s or women’s history with 2,571 points. She’s first in rebounds by almost 300 over the next closest person and is fourth in blocks with 217. She is shooting .655 from the field in her career.
- Gustafson has had an incredible career as a Hawkeye and is currently destroying the competition in the voting for the Greatest Hawkeye of All-Time.
- Stewart is a 6’2” forward from Bishop Ryan Catholic High School in Minot, North Dakota.
- She is a health and physiology major.
- Stewart was named North Dakota Miss Basketball by North Dakota Associated Press Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association in 2015. Stewart was also a standout volleyball and softball player. She played pitcher and shortstop in softball, and owns the school records for home runs, career hits, and pitching wins
- As a freshman, Stewart didn’t see as much action as the other two freshmen but appeared in 12 games.
- Her sophomore season, Stewart appeared in all 34 games and scored 167 points, 94 rebounds, 17 blocks, and 14 assists. She was also named Academic All-Big Ten.
- Stewart kept improving as a junior as she registered single-season bests in points (235), rebounds (145), assists (46), blocks (24), steals (35), field goals made (106), and free throws made (23). She was once again an Academic All-Big Ten selection.
- So far as a senior, Stewart has started every game and is averaging 11.4 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. She epitomizes the strength of the women’s game where a player can come to the program as a great talent and improve for four straight seasons to become a great player.
It’s been a pleasure to watch these three players grow together and lead the Hawkeyes. Hopefully this is just the beginning of a long run through the Big Ten Championships and then the NCAA Tournament so that the country can appreciate what we’ve been treated to for the past four years.