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It’s about confidence

Portland State women’s basketball junior guard Nikki Petticrew demonstrates unparalleled confidence after making transition from 2A prep to Division I play.

Born in Spokane, Wash. to George and Annie Petticrew, she took to basketball at an early age. In fact, Petticrew first started playing the game with her brother.

From youngster to high school standout, Petticrew quickly made her mark on the sport of basketball. And as a junior, she led her high school, Lakeside, to the 2A Championship.

Besides leading her team to a championship, Petticrew was a two-time all state selection and was named a 1998 USA Today All-American. On top of these honors, Petticrew played multiple sports including softball and volleyball.

Making the transition from high school to college was a big step for Petticrew, but one that she is glad she made.

“It was hard because, my freshman year, I didn’t play at all very much,” she said. “In high school, I always played.”

Despite the lack of playing time her freshman year, Petticrew isn’t complaining now, in fact she is a starter for the Vikings and averages 35 minutes a game, the most on the team. However, minutes aren’t the only numbers Petticrew delivers.

Her free throw percentage is the highest on the team at 88.9 percent for the year. Petticrew also holds the second highest three-point percentage at 33.1. In addition, she has the most steals for the team at 42 and the second most rebounds with 96.

Shooting free throws is one of Petticrew’s favorite things to do and one of the things she is best at. And with a college career percentage of 88.6, why shouldn’t it be?

“I just shoot a lot of free throws,” she said. “I hate to miss them.”

Besides the flashy numbers and super stats, the one thing that sets Petticrew apart from other players is confidence. She feels that confidence is what has made her a better player, and helps her to encourage other players on her team in a positive way.

As well as a high level of confidence, Petticrew feels she brings a hard working attitude to the team. And she summed up her other attribute in three short words.

“I’m a shooter,” she said.

Games can take a lot of energy and strength out of players, so Petticrew has a couple of simple pregame rituals that she likes to perform before each one.

“I take a nap,” Petticrew said with a grin. “I try not to do much of anything.”

Whether she’s on the court or “not doing much of anything,” Petticrew has proven a little bit of confidence can go a long, long way.