Less than three weeks after the Los Angles Sparks used the #11 overall pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft to select Oregon State stand-out Sydney Wiese, the former Beavers star will likely be making her debut for her new professional team, as the Sparks kick-off their pre-season slate against the New York Liberty in a neutral site match-up played at Mohegan Sun (Uncasville, CT). The game is slated for a 2:00 PM PT tip-off and is part of a two-game pre-season doubleheader, that will also feature a later contest between the host-team Connecticut Sun and the Chicago Sky.
Despite being just a pre-season game, the contest will give both Oregon State and Los Angeles Sparks fans the first potential glimpse at Wiese, who is expected to receive suitable playing time as head coach Brian Agler attemps to whittle down his roster before the start of the regular season. In addition to Wiese, Beaver nation should also be on the lookout for Oregon State alumni Jamie Weisner, who plays for the Sparks as well. Wiese and Weisner are currently the only two Beaver alumni expected to play in the league this season, as Dallas Wings center Ruth Hamblin, the league’s other Oregon State alum, has chosen to sit out the 2017 WNBA campaign to focus on making the Canadian National Team roster.
While most first-round picks are sure-fired locks to not only make a team’s opening day roster but find regular playing time from day one, Wiese will have to be sure to put all her talents on display from the get-go, as she tries to find a niche on the league’s reigning champions roster. With just three pre-season contests over the course of five days to prove her worth, Wiese will have a speedy turn-around as the WNBA regular season officially begins for Los Angeles on Saturday, May 13th, at home against the Seattle Storm. That game is scheduled for a 2:00 PM PT tip-off and will be broadcast nationally on ESPN.
Despite a daunting roster of talented pieces around her, Wiese seems confident about her chances to make it at the next level, as she told OregonLive.com in a post-draft article that, “I’m willing to do whatever it takes to contribute to the team. I'll learn what they expect as a group, and as an individual, what they want from me. Then once I have that clarity, I will take it and run with it."
Los Angeles also seems to be excited about the former Beavers potential as well, as Penny Toler, the team’s Executive Vice President and General Manager, raved about Wiese on the team’s official website. “Sydney is one of the best point guards in the country. She is a very good passer, penetrator, and 3pt shooter that has shown that she can affect the outcome of a game be either her scoring or passing ability. She will be a great addition to our team now and for years to come.”