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Jacy Sheldon added to Wade Award watch list

Sheldon is up for the award given annually to the top player in women’s college basketball.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

For the second day in a row, an Ohio State Buckeye guard received end-of-season award recognition. This time, junior Jacy Sheldon was named to a list of 37 athletes in the running for the 2022 Wade Trophy. The 45-year-old award is the oldest prize in the nation for awarding a player of the year in women’s basketball, and is selected by the WBCA NCAA Division 1 Coaches’ All-America Selection Committee.

Sheldon leads all Buckeyes in field goals made (151), assists (80), steals (20), points (427) and points per game (20.3). She is one of only 20 players in all of women’s college basketball that averages over 20 points per game. Across the Big Ten, Sheldon’s .519 field goal percentage and 20.3 points per game rank fourth and fifth in the conference, respectively. On Jan. 17, Sheldon was also recognized for her work in the conference in being named Co-Player of the Week.

Even in games where Sheldon doesn’t add to her impressive stat sheet, like Monday’s nine-point game against Rutgers University, she’s still making pivotal shots to keep Ohio State competing. In the second quarter, where the Buckeyes only scored 10 points, a three-pointer came from Sheldon to break up a long run by the Scarlet Knights, keeping Rutgers at bay. Those types of moments are frequent for the Buckeye guard.

For all the excitement and attention Sheldon attracts on the court, she’s one of the first to put team achievement over personal. In the Buckeyes’ Jan. 20 upset over the Maryland Terrapins, Sheldon’s 1000th point came on a pair of free throws to seal the victory for Ohio State. The in-arena staff announced the accomplishment as Sheldon stood at the line, about ready to score her 1001st point, and Sheldon looked almost uncomfortable with the attention.

“To be honest, I was worried about winning the game,” said Sheldon postgame. “I’m glad we pulled out the dub. It was a great win for us.” Those two shots put the Buckeyes up six, with only seconds remaining on the clock.

So far in the 2021/22 season, Sheldon has led the Buckeyes in whichever way is needed. Since joining Ohio State as a freshman in 2019-20, Sheldon’s played in a shooting guard role. This campaign, Sheldon’s adapted back to her high school days and shifted to the point guard position. Due to a season-ending injury to Madison Greene and Jan. 9 injury to sophomore guard Kateri Poole, Sheldon has led the offense.

With Sheldon playing field general, the Buckeyes have won seven out of eight, and sit in third place in the conference standings with six games remaining in B1G play. Ohio State is fighting to remain in the top four and earn a bye into the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament.

The field of 37 Wade Award shortlisted players narrows in March, with the award being given on an undetermined date in late March or early April. In the 45 years of the award’s history, no Ohio State player has won the honor. See the full watch list here.

Sheldon’s honor comes one day after fellow guard Taylor Mikesell was named as a finalist for the Ann Myers-Drysdale Award for top shooting guard in the nation. Both Sheldon and Mikesell with look to lead the Buckeyes on Thursday when the Nebraska Cornhuskers come to Columbus. The game tips off at 7:00 p.m. ET.