Former Baldwin standout Abby Ogle to continue basketball career at West Virginia
photo by: Journal-World File Photo
All the hard work in the offseason ultimately paid off for former Baldwin girls basketball standout Abby Ogle.
Following the conclusion of her best collegiate season at Hutchinson Community College, Ogle announced that she was going to continue her basketball career at West Virginia University. Ogle, who graduated from BHS in 2018, chose West Virginia over Kent State, Ohio and Texas State.
“That’s where my heart was telling me where to go,” Ogle said. “I looked at the other schools that were looking at me, and I just really felt that West Virginia was the place that I wanted to go to.”
Ogle, a 5-foot-8 guard, said that the Mountaineers started recruiting her a couple of games into her sophomore season. Members of the WVU staff then came and watched Ogle practice at Hutchinson in December, offering her a chance to be on the 2020-21 roster shortly after that.
While considering her options, Ogle delivered her best season yet on the hardwood. She led the Blue Dragons to a Jayhawk West championship and was named the Jayhawk West Player of the Year. She averaged 15.5 points per contest in 30 games this past season.
Now she will continue her career with the Mountaineers, who finished sixth in the Big 12 standings during the 2019-20 campaign.
“They have a pretty good program already,” Ogle said. “They are Big 12, so I get to play a couple games close to home. So that was good.”
But becoming a Power Five player, fresh off a sensational season, didn’t happen by accident. In fact, this was many years in the making for Ogle.
Ogle led Baldwin’s girls basketball team to a state title in 2018, capped by a 58-57 victory over Andale behind her 22-point performance. Ogle averaged 17.4 points per game to go along with 6.4 steals and 4.4 assists per contest.
Still, Ogle didn’t receive any offers from a program at the Division I or Division II level. Ogle had a few options at the NAIA level, including hometown Baker University, but ultimately chose to attend Hutchinson in an attempt to land somewhere bigger for her final two years.
“I think it’s really nice because that’s the whole reason I went to Hutch was to try and get DII and DI looks,” Ogle said. “I didn’t get what I wanted out of high school. Going to Hutch, I knew they were a good program and they could help get me to where I want to be.”
Yet Ogle’s superb sophomore campaign was a credit to her work ethic this past offseason.
After only averaging 7.7 points per game as a freshman, Ogle was determined to become more of an offensive threat. She especially wanted to improve as a 3-point shooter, so she fired up perimeter shots on a daily basis this past summer.
Ogle would go to the gym with a teammate and a coach every morning, and she wouldn’t leave until she made about 150-200 shots from five different locations along the 3-point line. Ogle would then work on ball-handling and shoot some more in the afternoon.
The shootarounds were longer at first, but Ogle eventually found her groove by the end of the summer. It led to her shooting 59.7% from the floor, including 38.4% on 86 attempts from long range.
“I have gotten a lot smarter and my shooting percentage has gone way up since high school,” Ogle said. “I became a more versatile player; I played all five position at least once during the year.”
The scoring boost made Ogle one of the better all-around players in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference. Ogle also averaged 6.5 rebounds and 3.8 steals per outing during her final season with the Blue Dragons, who finished the year with a 28-4 record.
Ogle still isn’t satisfied, however. She hopes to continue her growth as a shooter and focus on other areas of her game to improve as well.
While the coronavirus pandemic leaves her summer schedule uncertain at the moment, Ogle knows she needs be ready for West Virginia by this fall.
“I have to work harder than I ever have if I want to be able to play,” Ogle said.