Rudmann signs to play at Shawnee State

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 1, 2004

After taking care of the future, Andrea Rudmann can focus on the present.

Rudmann solved her college plans Tuesday as the Ironton Lady Fighting Tigers senior guard signed a letter-of-intent to play basketball for the Shawnee State Lady Golden Bears.

The 5-foot-9 guard said her decision eliminates a lot of pressures.

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"This way I can just concentrate on my senior year. I don't have to worry about anything else. I can just concentrate on basketball," Rudmann said.

A four-year starter, Rudmann averaged 16.6 points a game as a junior. She was named second team all-district and honorable mention All-Ohio.

Numerous other schools expressed interest including Wright State, Kent State, Rio Grande and Miami, Ohio.

"The offers were from a little bit of

everywhere," Rudmann said.

One of the factors in the decision was Shawnee State's 21-year veteran head coach Robin Hagen-Smith, but not just because of her 487-144 career record.

"I just liked her. When we first met her, she said her priorities were family, church, academics and athletics. She didn't put sports first and that's me," Rudmann said.

Shawnee State has

won six straight league titles and a national title.

"I didn't want to go somewhere and lose. They've won a national championship and (Hagen-Smith) is a heck of a coach," Rudmann said.

Another factor in Rudmann's decision was the academic program. She plans to major in biology the first two years, then enter the dental hygiene program.

"The academic program was the first thing I looked at. I wanted to make sure I fit in

there," Rudmann said.

Jumping to the next level will be a challenge, but Rudmann said the Lady Bears' style of play is similar to what she's used to at Ironton.

"They run and jump and they're always pressing. They run a triangle offense that allows more shooting on the perimeter. It's more like we do," Rudmann said. "It'll be a step

up, but I think I'll adjust. I think I'll fit in well with the team."

Andrea is the daughter of Bob and Cindy Rudmann of Ironton.