Basketball Star completes most-decorated college career

Friday, September 28, 2007

Erika Quigley

Erika Quigley ’07 completed her college career this spring as the most decorated player in St. Cloud State University women’s basketball history. She swept national player of the year honors as she was named the State Farm/Women’s Basketball Coaches Association National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II Player of the Year, the Daktronics National Player of the Year and the headliner on the Women’s Division II Basketball Bulletin All-American First Team.

At SCSU, the four-year starter became the all-time leader in scoring (2,570), rebounding (1,341) and blocked shots (300).

For the 2006-07 season, she led all NCAA Division II women in scoring with a 24.5 points-per-game average, ranked in the top 10 in rebounding, was named the North Central Conference MVP and brought to six the number of times during her career that she was named an All-American.

Quigley, who played volleyball and basketball in high school in Duluth, began her athletic career at SCSU with a bang: she averaged 18.1 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game, scored 29 points three times and was North Central Conference Freshman of the Year.

SCSU head women’s basketball coach Lori Ulferts had the pleasure of watching Quigley steadily top that performance. "She was consistently, from her freshman year to her senior year, the best player on the court. To see her ability to get off the quick shot, catch the ball in flight and adjust to the defenses and players around her was amazing," said Ulferts.

Quigley’s focus on the basketball court led to two of the most successful years in the history of the program. In back-to-back seasons (2004-05 and 2005-06), SCSU won the NCAA Division II North Central Region Championship and advanced to the NCAA Division II Elite Eight in Hot Springs, Ark.

The Huskies played in one of the most memorable games in the history of the program when SCSU tipped off against the University of North Dakota (UND) in front of a full house on the Fighting Sioux home court for the regional championship in 2006. At the time North Dakota was the number one-ranked team in the country and was undefeated with a 34-0 record. SCSU surprised the UND faithful, winning in a 75-69 upset.

That UND win stands out as one of her most memorable times at SCSU, said Quigley. "Beating UND to get into the Elite Eight on their own floor was amazing. My teammates and I still get excited when we talk about it. The rivalry was so intense, and you always got excited for that game," said Quigley.

The win gave SCSU a return trip to the Elite Eight. The team made history by defeating Shaw University 78-71 in the quarterfinals, and became the first SCSU basketball team, men’s or women’s, to advance to the NCAA Division II Final Four in a dream season for the entire team.

Quigley spent the summer completing her degree in sports management and working out with older brother Josh, who played international basketball for several years.

Once her playing career is over, Quigley wants to continue to be involved in sports, possibly as the manager of a sports facility.

In July she signed a contract to play for Thessalonika in Greece’s professional basketball league, beginning in September.

- Anne Abicht '06

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