Oliver named to national all-tourney team
Nichols: ’She did everything a guard is supposed to do’
EAST PEORIA, Ill. Chesapeake College freshman guard Shantrel Oliver has been named to the NJCAA Division II all-national tournament team.
"It’s a great honor I didn’t think I would get it," said Oliver, who averaged a team-high 17.5 points along with 3.0 steals, and 3.3 rebounds as the Skipjacks (28-4) went 3-1 in last week’s tournament to finish seventh in the nation. "It (going to nationals) was a great experience. I hope we can do it again next year."
While Oliver may have been surprised, her head coach wasn’t.
"She did everything a guard is supposed to do," said Damon Nichols, who guided the Skipjacks to state, region and district championships on the way to the national tournament. "She played defense, she distributed the ball and she scored. She’s been a great all-around player and a pleasure to have on our team."
Oliver made a great final impression at the national tournament, scoring 17 points on 6-for-11 shooting from the field as the Skipjacks beat Southeast Community College, 65-50, in Saturday’s seventh-place game. She also had 17 points and a game-high six steals in Chesapeake’s 58-55 overtime win over Prairie State College last Friday and scored her tournament high of 20 points in last Thursday’s 60-54 victory over St. Louis Community College.
Oliver scored 16 points with three steals, three rebounds and two assists in the Skipjacks’ 86-66, tournament-opening loss to Louisburg College, which went on to finish third.
"The level of play definitely stepped up," Oliver said of the national tournament competition. "We just had to come together as a team and bond."
Oliver said the Skipjacks had to refocus their goals after the opening loss to Louisburg, with the team committing to winning its final three games to claim seventh place.
"It was a great opportunity," Oliver said of playing national-caliber competition on four consecutive days.
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