Flyers women’s basketball seniors to return for 2021-22 season

Flyers women’s basketball senior guard tandem Erin Whalen, Araion Bradshaw and Jenna Giacone (left to right, head coach Shauna Green in black shirt) will all return for another season of collegiate basketball. Photo courtesy of Christian Cubacub, Flyer News.

Peter Burtnett
Sports Editor

Dayton Flyers women’s basketball fifth-year senior guard Erin Whalen, who led the team in scoring this year, announced April 9 she will be returning for a sixth season and her third of playing at UD. Fellow senior guard Jenna Giacone announced her intention to do the same one week later, and Araion Bradshaw followed suit Wednesday.

Whalen, a 6-foot-1 guard from Charlotte, N.C., originally transferred from Vanderbilt and sat out the 2018-19 season. When she played 33 games (23 starts) in 2019-20, she finished second on the team in scoring (12.2 points) behind Jayla Scaife, and finished third in rebounds (4.8) while shooting 34 percent from three. The Flyers ran through A-10 play (15-1) and won the championship game before COVID-19 caused the NCAA Tournament to be cancelled.

In the 2020-21 season, Whalen led the team in scoring (13.6 points) and finished third in rebounds (4.8). She shot 41 percent from three in 19 games played.

“I just wanted another opportunity to compete for an A-10 title and have the chacne to play in the NCAA (Tournament),” Whalen said to Flyer News. “I feel like we have a really good team coming back and I’m excited to be apart [sic] of it.”

Giacone, a 6-foot-1 guard from Delmar, N.Y., has spent all five years at Dayton. After averaging 6.4 points per game in 2019-20, Giacone was the A-10 Most Improved Player, jumping up to 12.4 points per game in 2020-21.

Giacone has averaged 2.1 rebounds per game and shot 37 percent from the field over her career at UD.

Bradshaw, 5-foot-6 guard from Boston, Mass., transferred from South Carolina (where she won a National Championship as a freshman) in 2017-18, sitting out the first season. She then spent the next three years starting in all but one of 83 games played.

In those games, Bradshaw has averaged 5.9 points (7.2 in 2020-21), 3.3 assists, and 4.6 rebounds per game, and tallied 110 steals. Bradshaw was named A-10 Defensive Player of the Year in 2020-21.

The Flyers will now return the entire 2020-21 roster — besides transfer-away freshman Bailee Adkins, who sat out with an injury — that finished the regular season 13-2 will be back.

The Flyers lost in the A-10 semifinals to eventual champion VCU, and fell in the First Round of the WNIT to Northern Iowa and the Consolation Round to Bowling Green. In 2021-22, they will have a strong chance to win the A-10 championship again and play in the NCAA Tournament after missing their chance in 2019-20.

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