NMU Wildcats add 5 to women’s basketball team on National Signing Day

Published: Nov. 9, 2023 at 1:34 PM EST
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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - The Northern Michigan women’s basketball team signed five to National Letters of Intent on National Signing Day Wednesday.

According to a press release from the university, Ava Bates, Addison Pytleski, Jordyn Schmittdiel, Madison Schroeder and Sydney Whitehouse will join the Wildcats as freshmen for the 2024-25 season.

Head Coach Casey Thousand said, “This is an excellent start to our 2024 recruiting class. These five individuals are top notch student-athletes! Each one of them will enhance our women’s basketball program and will bring something special to our locker room. We are very excited to have them join our Wildcat Family!”

Ava Bates is a 6′1 Forward/Center from St. Johns, Mich.

  • 2023 Mid-Michigan All-Area 1st Team, MMAC Conference Player of the Year, First Team All-Conference, All-State
  • 2022 Second Team All-Conference
  • School record for most 3-pointers in a season (46)

“Ava is a very athletic player who has a huge upside. We are excited to see her stretch the defense on offense while being a factor on the defensive end. Ava adds some more size to our roster. Her talent and skill will allow her to play multiple positions on the court for us. She is a great fit into our program and the NMU community,” Thousand said.

Addison Pytleski is a 5′9 Guard from Green Bay, Wisc.

  • 2023 FRCC All-Conference & All-Defensive Team
  • 2022 FRCC All-Conference

“Addison is a quick athletic guard who has a ton of grit. Her determination and her court awareness will help us in the future. She isn’t afraid to play physical and won’t back down to a challenge. We are excited to add her to our program to battle in the GLIAC,” Thousand said.

Jordyn Schmittdiel is a 5′11 Guard from White Bear Lake, Minn.

  • 2022-23 All-Conference, All-State Honorable Mention , MVP, Defensive Player of the Year Award
  • 2021-22 4AAAA 3rd place at state, All-Conference Honorable Mention

“Jordyn adds some more length to our guard position. She understands the game and makes the right plays in tough situations. She is versatile and can score in multiple ways on the court and will be able to handle the ball against pressure. I am excited to watch her grow into the college game and what she can bring to us in the future!” Thousand said.

Madison Schroeder is a 5′11 Forward from Peotone, IL.

  • 2023 Illinois Basketball Coaches Association All-State 2A Second Team
  • 2023 Illinois Associated Press 2A All-State Honorable Mention
  • 2023 Daily Journal All-Area
  • 2023 Daily Journal Girls Basketball Player of the Year
  • 2023 South Suburban Hoops All-Area First Team
  • 2023 Illinois Central Eight Conference All Academic Award
  • 2022-2023 Illinois Central Eight All-Conference First Team
  • 2022 Beecher High School Ladycat Fall Classic All-Tournament Team
  • 2022 Peotone Winter Classic All-Tournament Team
  • 2022 Illinois Associated Press All-State Honorable Mention
  • 2021-2022 Illinois Central Eight All-Conference First Team
  • 2022 Team Top Outstanding Player Award
  • 2022 MaxPreps Top 25 assists
  • 2022 Daily Journal All-Area Recognition
  • 2021 Varsity Girls Basketball Most Valuable Player (Defense)
  • 2021 MaxPreps Top 25: assists and steals
  • 2021 Daily Journal All-Area Recognition
  • 2021 Illinois Central Eight All-Conference First Team
  • 2021 Joliet Herald Honorable Mention
  • 2021 Beecher Ladycat Fall Classic All-Tournament Recognition

“Madison is an athletic forward who caught my attention with her athletic ability on the court. Madison is very coordinated and can catch every pass thrown her way. Her speed and quickness helps her out-run opponents. On the defensive side of the game, her wingspan helps to defend the rim. We are very excited to add her into our roster next season,” said Thousand.

Sydney Whitehouse is a 5′9 Forward from Green Bay, Wsic.

  • State Champion (2021, 2022, 2023)
  • Second Team All-Conference
  • First Team All-State

“Sydney brings a winning mindset to our program. Her work ethic and precision on the court helps her team accumulate wins. She is a great teammate, who pushes everyone around her to be better. She is a great leader and will contribute to the team in any way possible! We are excited about adding Sydney to this recruiting class,” Thousand said.