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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

April 16, 2009

Northwest Basketball Announces Signees

MARYVILLE, Mo.-Northwest Missouri State University has announced the names of four basketball players who have signed national letters of intent to compete for the Bearcats next season.

Northwest women's head coach Gene Steinmeyer has signed Whitney Rawdon (Eau Claire, Wis./North H.S.), Ashley Thayer (Prairie Village, Kan./Bishop Miege H.S.) and Gabby Curtis (Genado, Ariz./Cowley County C.C.). Northwest men's head coach Ben McCollum has signed Bryston Williams (St. Joseph, Mo./Lafayette H.S.).

Rawdon, a 5-11 guard/forward, averaged just less than 10 points and added four rebounds per game for the 20-2 North Huskies while earning first-team all-Big Rivers Conference honors. Rawdon won three conference titles and two regional championships at North. She was also a state qualifier on both her high school golf and track and field teams.

"Whitney is a gifted athlete who has shined on some talented teams," said Steinmeyer. "She'll add size and athleticism to our guards this fall."

Rawdon's parents both attended Northwest Missouri State University. Her mother, Tammy, was enshrined into the Bearcat Hall of Fame in 2006 as a member of the 1987 women's tennis team.

Thayer, a 5-8 shooting guard, won two Kansas 5A state championships in three seasons at Bishop Miege. She averaged 10 points, three rebounds and three assists as a senior in leading the Stags to one of those titles and a 23-2 record this past season.

"Ashley is a versatile player with good ball handling skills," said Steinmeyer. "She's also an excellent shooter as evidenced by her 21-point performance in the championship game last month."

Curtis, a 5-8 guard, earned second-team all-region honors at Cowley County last season after averaging 12.5 points and 3.4 rebounds per game. She posted nearly identical numbers during her freshman campaign and led the team in steals both seasons.

Curtis won a high school championship at Ganado in 2007 and was also the state's 2007 Small School Player of the Year. She's the first native American to make the Dairy Counsel All-America Team.

"Gabby is a proven scorer who can shine on the defensive end as well," said Steinmeyer.

Williams, a 6-1 guard, averaged 18.9 points, nine rebounds and 3.5 assists for the Fighting Irish this past season and helped lead Lafayette to its first district championship since 1985 as a junior. Williams also quarterbacked Lafayette's football team into the playoffs this past season.

"Bryston is an athlete who can make an immediate impact on our program," said McCollum. "He has great attributes, has a tough mentality, competes hard and has outstanding character. We're excited to have Bryston become a part of our Bearcat family."

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics
sid@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468