« Women’s Basketball 2019-20

Laura Bagwell-Katalinich

School

Cornell University

Position
Forward
Major
Communication

Classroom

Bagwell-Katalinich has shown tremendous commitment to her academics, holding a 3.934 cumulative grade point average at Cornell as a communication major and business minor. For her efforts, she was named to the CoSIDA Google Cloud Academic All-District Team in 2018-19, while also earning Academic All-Ivy Honors in 2018-19. Bagwell-Katalinich has made the Dean’s List at Cornell on four separate occasions and is a member of Cornell’s 400 Club, a recognition given to student-athletes who have finished a semester with a perfect 4.0. Bagwell-Katalinich continues to put herself in a position to have a successful career post-graduation, having served as a marketing and market research intern at Cappella University during the summer of 2019 and gaining invaluable hands-on experience.

Character

Bagwell-Katalinich has earned the respect of her teammates for her dedication and success both on and off the court. She was recently elected as Cornell’s team captain for the 2019-20 campaign by her teammates, who value her strong work ethic, skill set and productivity. Bagwell-Katalinich’s teammates feed off of the passion and the intensity with which she plays, day in and day out.

Bagwell-Katalinich has always been the epitome of a team player, even when faced with adversity. As a transfer, she was required to miss all competition for one full year prior to being eligible during the 2018-19 campaign. While this was undoubtedly hard for Bagwell-Katalinich, she brought a determination and drive to practice every single day and made her teammates better. Though she would be unable to participate with her team on game days, she knew that her overall intensity and ability to challenge her teammates would benefit the team even if she were not on the floor. Bagwell-Katalinich’s unselfishness and consistency were a tribute to her character and her ability to put the team first.

Bagwell-Katalinich is a fierce competitor and a driven student-athlete. Her work ethic is showcased by her athletic prowess and academic integrity. She is motivated to succeed in everything she does and she carries herself with pride and confidence.

Community

Bagwell-Katalinich takes pride in her involvement within the community and is committed to helping those in need. She is heavily involved with Team Impact, as well as Cornell Red Key. Last season, the Cornell women’s basketball team adopted seven-year-old Karina Hill, who was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy in 2012. Bagwell-Katalinich was one of the guiding forces in welcoming Karina to the team, helping coordinate her “adoption” and lining up further interactions between Karina and the team to make sure she feels included and welcome at all times.

Through Cornell Red Key, Bagwell-Katalinich is a frequent visitor of Newfield Elementary School, where she spends time with first graders and assists them with their math and reading skills. Bagwell-Katalinich thrives off of the time she gets to spend with these students, realizing that some of these children might not have much other positive interaction throughout the day. She undoubtedly brightens these students’ days.

Bagwell-Katalinich is also heavily involved with Cornell’s Student Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) and the Big Red Leadership Institute. She has helped the Cornell SAAC implement its #DontBearItAlone campaign, which was created to improve awareness of mental health issues and resources available to student-athletes. As a member of the Big Red Leadership Institute, she strives to empower Cornell’s student-athletes to confidently assume roles as both team leaders and teammates for the betterment of the Big Red teams and the Cornell community.

Finally, Bagwell-Katalinich helps coach the Red Raiders, Tompkins County’s Special Olympics basketball team. She has worked with players ranging from elementary school children to middle-aged adults, helping run practices and drills for the previous two years. She plans to coach again this spring as well.

Competition

Bagwell-Katalinich was a game changer for Cornell in her first season with the Big Red in 2018-19, becoming just the 11th player in program history to be named First-Team All-Ivy League. Bagwell-Katalinich put together one of the best seasons in Cornell women’s basketball history, finishing the year ranked in the top-10 on the Big Red’s single season charts in points per game (ninth – 16.1), field goals made (seventh – 167), free throw percentage (tenth - .842) and offensive rebounds (fifth – 86). She led the team in scoring (16.1) and rebounding (7.9), marks which were good for fourth and third, respectively, in the Ivy League. Even more impressive, Bagwell-Katalinich became just the third player in Cornell history to finish a season ranked in the top-10 in the program for both points (419) and rebounds (206). She scored in double-digits in 21 consecutive games over the course of the season, reaching the 20 point plateau on nine occasions.

Bagwell-Katalinich’s poise from the free throw line was evident, as her free throw percentage of .842 not only ranked first in the Ivy League, but 47th in the nation last season. She hit the boards hard, finishing the season ranked third in the Ivy League in offensive rebounds per game (3.3) and ninth in defensive rebounds per game (4.6). Bagwell-Katalinich also ranked 10th in the Ivy League in steals per game (1.5) and field goal percentage (.454).

To date, Bagwell-Katalinich has scored in double figures in 34 of the 39 games she has played in a Big Red uniform, currently leading Cornell and ranking sixth in the Ivy League in scoring (15.3 ppg).