Taylor Sheley of Backus has been named the Women's Basketball Player of the Week by the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
According to a press release from the MIAC, the Bethel women's basketball team continued its blazing start to the season with three conference wins last week, giving the Royals a seven-game winning streak and their first 5-0 MIAC start in team history.
Leading the charge was Sheley, a senior guard, whose all-around play has been crucial to Bethel's 7-1 start. She averaged 21.3 points and 6.0 rebounds per game last week in the three wins, including a stellar second-half performance against Augsburg.
Sheley's big week began with a clutch performance in a 66-57 home win over the previously unbeaten Auggies. She poured in 19 second-half points en route to 26 points in the win. She led the Royals to another close win over Carleton, 52-51, just two days later with a full stat line of 19 points, five rebounds and two steals, and she capped her brilliant week with a double-double. Sheley had 19 points and 11 rebounds in a 68-60 road win at Saint Mary's Saturday to give Bethel plenty of momentum heading into its Holiday break.
This season, Sheley has been one of the MIAC's top all-around players. In overall games, she leads the league in scoring (19.4 points per game), steals (3.13 per game) and three-pointers (2.5 per game) and she's eighth in assists (2.63 per game). She's been just as good in conference play, leading the MIAC in scoring (19.4 ppg) and threes (2.6 per game) and she's tied for seventh in steals (2.2 per game) and assists (2.6 per game).
The three wins last week moved Bethel to its aforementioned 7-1 overall record and 5-0 start in MIAC play, with a season-opening loss to Wisconsin Lutheran serving as the only blemish on its record. The Royals and their star player will not get some well-deserved time off with finals and the Holidays looming. Bethel will return to action on Jan. 2 when it hosts Concordia at 5:45 p.m.
Sheley graduated from Pine River-Backus High School, where she was an athlete in softball, track, volleyball and basketball. She was a five-year letter winner in basketball, and was rewarded with three in volleyball and three in softball. Taylor was in All-Conference for four years in basketball and was again in All-Conference for two years in volleyball.
Daughter of Kim and Dave Sheley, she was also an Honors Student and is now currently majoring in nursing.