The Michigan women’s basketball team sits in the shadow of Big Ten foes, No. 6 Maryland and No. 7 Ohio State, but it is making a case for more recognition in the conference. The Wolverines trounced Oakland, 101-63, on Friday night, and followed that impressive performance with a 107-35 blowout over Niagara on Sunday afternoon in the first weekend of regular season play.

Two Michigan players, junior guard Katelynn Flaherty and freshman guard Kysre Gondrezick, were honored by the Big Ten after their performances over the weekend.

Flaherty earned her spot on the Big Ten Player of the Week honor roll through consistent goal scoring, leading the team in both games. She racked up 23 points against the Golden Grizzlies, and she tallied 14 more against the Purple Eagles in just 17 minutes of action to become the 10th player in Michigan history to score 1,300 career points.

“I think our whole team came out with a little butterflies (against Oakland),” said Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico. “And in the first half, we didn’t shoot the ball exceptionally well. But then Katelynn got hot in the second half, and for her, the difference is she’s facing every team’s best defender from the start.”

When the rest of the Wolverines — especially Gondrezick, who was playing in her first collegiate game — got rid of their first-game butterflies, they provided enough of a distraction that Flaherty was left with plenty of time to get her shots off. Gondrezick, who was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week, came off the bench and scored 19 points in just 18 minutes against Oakland, effectively drawing some of the Golden Grizzlies’ defenders off of Flaherty.

The week before, Gondrezick was the only freshman to get significant playing time in the Wolverines’ exhibition game against Wayne State, but she was not able to land any of her attempts to score her first points.

“I’m glad I got (the exhibition game) underneath my belt,” Gondrezick said. “Just being in front of the Michigan crowd for the first time and playing on that floor was so surreal for me. I think I approached the game too fast. I didn’t let it come to me.”

Gondrezick proved her exhibition debut to be a fluke when it counted, though. Over the weekend, she quickly became the Wolverines’ second-leading scorer behind Flaherty with 31 points over two games. She has also contributed a team-high nine assists.

Her solid play paved the way for the rest of the freshman class to get off the bench. Freshmen guard Kayla Robbins, forward KeAsja Peace, and guard Akienreh Johnson all contributed their first collegiate points on Sunday, with 12, four and eight, respectively.

“(Gondrezick’s) a basketball player,” Barnes Arico said. “She really has a great understanding of the game. She led our team in assists the other day. She can score the ball, she can rebound the basketball, but she’s gotta continue to get better. She’s going to have some bumps in the road, but she’s got a chance to be a special player for us.”

Added Gondrezick: “Scoring-wise, I just have a knack for putting the ball in the basket, but my focus right now is impacting the team through other facets of my game, whether that’s dropping dimes, or rebounding, or collapsing on the defensive end and getting steals.”

With Flaherty to look up to, there’s no reason to believe that Gondrezick will not have an impactful presence for Michigan. If both players can manage to remain consistent, opposing teams will have a quite a pair to defend against.

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