INDIANAPOLIS, IN– The U.S. Basketball Writers Association selected Columbia first-year guard Abbey Hsu the Tamika Catchings Women’s National Freshman of the Week. The association’s weekly honors, as selected by USBWA women’s basketball coordinator Mel Greenberg, were announced Tuesday afternoon for the week ending on Feb. 16
Hsu, who was named both the Ivy League Player and Rookie of the Week on Monday, becomes the second Lion in program history to earn the USBWA freshman honor. Sophomore Sienna Durr became the first last season on her way to being named both Ivy League Rookie of the Year and Met Basketball Writers Association Women’s Div. I Rookie of the Year.
Since the 1987-88 season, the USBWA has named a women's National Player of the Year. For the 2012-13 season, the national and weekly player award became named for Hall of Famer and former UCLA All-American Ann Meyers Drysdale while this is the first season the national and weekly freshman award is being given in the name of former Tennessee All-American Tamika Catchings.
Hsu averaged 25.0 points to lead Columbia to its first Ivy League weekend sweep since 2011 and its first weekend sweep over Dartmouth and Harvard in program history. She combined to shoot 55.2 percent (16-29) from the floor over the two games, including 50 percent (10-20) from 3-point range, and also averaged 5.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.0 steals.
The highlight of Hsu’s weekend came on Saturday, when she scored a career-high 31 points on 11-of-15 shooting in a convincing, 89-64, victory over Harvard. Hsu scored Columbia’s first eight points and later ignited a 14-0 run that had the Lions leading by 26 at halftime. The Parkland, Florida native had 20 points herself at the break and was lights out from deep, ending the night 6-of-9 from 3-point range. Her final bucket of the game was a triple from the corner before heading to the bench with 4:16 remaining and the game well in hand. Hsu’s 31 points were the most by a Columbia first-year since Tori Oliver set the rookie record with 33 back in 2014.
Hsu began the weekend with a game-high 19 points to go with seven rebounds in a hard-fought, 73-63, win Friday night against Dartmouth. Eight of her points came in the fourth quarter, including a triple with just over a minute remaining that cemented the win.
Eight games into the Ivy League season, Hsu is averaging a league-best 20.4 points per game in Ivy play. She also tops all competitors across league games in 3-point percentage (.493) and 3-pointers made (34), while ranking second in field goal percentage (.504). Hsu has scored more points through her first eight career Ivy League games than any other Lion in program history. On the season overall, Hsu is shooting 43.8 percent from 3-point range, which also leads the Ivy League and ranks 15th-best in the NCAA.
Columbia (13-8, 4-4 Ivy) hits the road for its next four games, beginning this upcoming weekend with a trip to Brown (7-14, 1-7 Ivy) and Yale (14-6, 5-3 Ivy). Friday night’s tip against the Bears from the Pizzitola Sports Center in Providence is scheduled for 6 p.m.