Schumacher Inks Free Agent Contract

News Release | February 16, 2005
Indiana Fever Chief Operating Officer and General Manager Kelly Krauskopf has announced the free agent signing of veteran center Kelly Schumacher who will join the Fever for her fifth season in 2005. Schumacher is a long-time reserve and recent starter for the Fever whose 125 games played are the most in Fever history. Per club policy, terms were not disclosed.

In 2004, Schumacher emerged as one of Indiana’s foremost scoring threats and one of the team’s most consistent players. She posted career highs with averages of 7.0 points per game, 3.3 rebounds and 1.0 blocks last season, improving upon her previous highs of 5.6 points and 2.9 rebounds in 2003.

Schumacher’s improvement was most dramatic at midseason when she posted 8.1 points per game and 3.8 rebounds as a reserve through 11 games in July. The 6-foot-4 former Connecticut star was inserted into the Fever starting lineup after the WNBA’s Olympic break during August, and in seven September starts, she averaged 10.7 points and 4.3 rebounds.

A prominent player in the lane because of her size and shot-blocking defense, Schumacher has shown considerable success at stretching defenses offensively with her perimeter shooting – a career 42 percent shooter from 3-point range. Second in Fever history in blocked shots, she is the franchise’s fifth-leading scorer and fourth-leading rebounder.

Schumacher played professionally in Turkey in 2003-04, and has spent her 2004-05 WNBA offseason playing both in China and Spain.

Following last week’s signing of All-Star Natalie Williams, Schumacher is the second Fever player signed during the league’s free agency signing period which began Feb. 1. Other Fever free agents include Niele Ivey, Kristen Rasmussen, Kate Starbird and Stephanie White. Tamika Catchings, drafted by the Fever in the same year as Ivey and Schumacher, is already under contract through 2006.

The Fever opens training camp on April 24 and begins the 2005 schedule hosting consecutive home games in May. Indiana hosts the Charlotte Sting on Sunday, May 22 (6:00 p.m.), and the Phoenix Mercury on Tuesday, May 24 (7:00 p.m.). For season ticket information, call (317) 917-2500.