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Notre Dame's Bradshaw officially signs with Southeast
Southeast Missouri State women's basketball coach John Ishee is excited about Wednesday's early signee for two reasons.
One, Allyson Bradshaw is a local product attending Notre Dame Regional High School.
Two, Ishee believes Bradshaw has what it takes to be a solid Division I player, which overrides the first reason.
"We don't sign a girl just because she's local," Ishee said. "One of the first things I told her in the recruiting process, 'It's icing on the cake you come from a local high school, but that's icing, not the cake. You're the cake. You can play.'
"If she couldn't play, we wouldn't have offered her a scholarship."
Bradshaw, a 5-foot-7 senior point guard for the Bulldogs, signed a national letter of intent on the first day of the NCAA's weeklong early signing period.
"I'm really excited about it. I'm glad to get it over with," said Bradshaw, who verbally committed to Southeast over the summer. "I've been waiting a long time."
Bradshaw earned all-state honors as a junior after helping lead the Bulldogs to last season's Class 4 championship game, which they lost to Webb City.
Despite the presence of all-state forward/center Jane Morrill -- now playing basketball on scholarship at Arkansas State -- Bradshaw led the Bulldogs in scoring with an average of more than 15 points per game.
Bradshaw, who shot 40 percent from 3-point range, also averaged nearly five assists and three steals per contest.
"I am excited about Allyson," Ishee said. "I think she's a really neat kid with great character and competitiveness, plus she's a kid who's used to winning.
"She's helped take teams in two different sports [basketball and volleyball] to the final four. I think that speaks volumes."
Bradshaw was especially impressive during last year's basketball final four, leading the Bulldogs in scoring both games with a total of 44 points. She had 26 points in the semifinal and 18 in the final.
"The thing that probably impressed me the most, last year at the state tournament, she did not back down from taking big shots in pressure situations. In fact, she relished it," Ishee said. "I think she can play more than one position because she can really shoot the 3-point shot.
"She's strong, she's a good athlete, she's got a quick first step. I think once she concentrates just on basketball, she'll be even better."
Bradshaw said she liked Southeast for a variety of reasons.
"I'm really excited about it being close to home, that way people I know can come watch me," she said. "I really like coach Ishee and I liked all the players when I met them on my visit."
Bradshaw also is looking forward to playing just one sport in college after the three-sport star has been busy with not only basketball but also volleyball and soccer for the Bulldogs.
Bradshaw said she will work hard to make an impact for the Redhawks as a freshman next season.
"I'm a pretty good shooter on the outside," she said. "My defense needs a lot of work, but with my foot speed, I think I can get better at that," she said. "I'll just work hard [next year], use the stuff I've been taught and the stuff I'm going to learn there."
Ishee said there is a chance Southeast could sign another player during the early period. The Redhawks have one more scholarship available.