Henna Sandvik is the Hoosier whose usage I was most fascinated by in 2023-23.
The six foot guard out of Helsinki made it into 23 of Indiana’s 32 games, totaling 13 points, 17 rebounds, and five assists on the season. Those stats don’t exactly jump off the page, but when you consider that Sandvik’s playing time primarily came as a stopgap for a starting wing dealing with foul trouble, they become more digestible! In that role, she was good!
The game that sticks out the most to me when thinking about Henna’s freshman year is the North Carolina matchup from Dec. 1. She was the first player off the bench for Indiana in that one and hit a three on an ATO immediately after checking in. She missed her other two field goal attempts against the Tar Heels but recorded a pair of rebounds and played sound defense throughout her 17 minutes on the floor.
The fact that Teri Moren trusted Sandvik that much that early on is indicative of her defensive IQ and awareness. Would love to see a little more from the Finnish U20 National Team member next season though, 17 shot attempts across an entire season is simply not enough for any player’s development.
Given how little we saw of Sandvik it’s a little hard to forecast what her role will be next season. With Grace Berger off to the WNBA, however, it’s safe to say that there’s playing time to be won in Bloomington.
Personally, I like the idea of Sandvik playing the 3. I think she has good length for her size and worked as a volume three point shooter for Finland at the 2022 Euro U20s. 22 of her 29 attempts at said event were from deep and she scored ten or more points in every game. Let her shoot more!
Ideally, I think we see Sandvik use her sophomore year to develop into a quality understudy for Sydney Parrish. If she wants the role, however, she’ll likely have to audition against incoming freshman Lenee Beaumont, who was just named 2023 Illinois Ms. Basketball.