Rebeka Mikulášiková Making Impact From Beyond The Arc

By January 19, 2023 (11:02 am)Basketball

Outside of guard Taylor Mikesell, whose shooting acumen from beyond the arc has been well-chronicled, most would guess that another one of Ohio State’s guards would be the team’s next most productive player from deep.

Perhaps Sheldon or guard Madison Greene were excelling from three-point range before injury, or maybe guard Emma Shumate — a known sharpshooter prior to her transfer to Ohio State — would be among the Buckeyes’ leaders in three-point shooting. Greene was lighting it up before her injury, shooting 56.0 percent from deep, though she had only taken 25 attempts on the season. Sheldon and Shumate have a similarly low volume, taking just 16 and 21 attempts, respectively.

As it turns out, the Buckeyes’ biggest weapon from deep this season outside of Mikesell has been Rebeka Mikulášiková, the 6-4 post player whose game has quickly extended beyond the paint. Mikulášiková is shooting 37.3 percent from beyond the arc on 83 attempts, which is far and away the most attempts besides Mikesell’s 142 shots from deep.

Mikulášiková has always had some infatuation with the deep ball, shooting it at a 46.3 percent clip in her freshman season on nearly two attempts per game, but she struggled to find that success again, at least until this season. She shot just 18.2 percent in 2020-21 before improving to 28.8 percent last season, and her impressive marks this season also feature her shooting at a higher volume, averaging 4.6 three-point attempts per game.

Some of her biggest games this season have been spurred by big performances from  beyond the arc. She had 27 points on 5-of-10 shooting from deep in Ohio State’s win over Oregon on Dec. 21, and in the Buckeyes’ win over Minnesota on Jan. 5, she had 15 points — all coming from the three ball, throwing it up 12 times from beyond the arc. She also finished with 25 points in Ohio State’s win over Nebraska on Jan. 14, going 3-of-4 from deep.

She’s still finding success as well inside the perimeter, shooting 58.5 percent on two-point attempts, but her game has been more well-rounded for Ohio State.

“She’s had a terrific season so far,” Ohio State head coach Kevin McGuff said. “She had a couple games there where she wasn’t quite as good as she’d been, so it was great to see her play so well at Nebraska. We wouldn’t have won against Nebraska if she didn’t play like she did.

“She’s a great player, she’s a great fit in our system,” he continued. “One of the things that makes us unique is the spacing that we play with on offense, and you can only do that when you have a center who can play on the perimeter as effectively as Rebeka does.”

And for a team like Ohio State that doesn’t feature much height outside of Mikulášiková, her ability to stretch the floor on offense helps open things up for the rest of the squad.

“I really like the way we’re playing on offense, and having a center like that, it just creates great spacing,” McGuff said. “It’s a tough matchup for other opposing centers that have to guard her on the perimeter.”

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