However, Husky fans will have to wait until the 2024-25 season to see her play for the Washington Huskies Women’s Basketball program.
Soltau has formally signed a contract with Eisvogel USC Freiburg Women in top-tier women’s basketball league in Germany, the DBBL (Damen Basketball Bundesliga) — arguably the most successful women’s professional basketball team in Germany, known for its fast-paced offense and tough defense.
I’m really looking forward to the season with the Eisvogel and the home games in the Unidome. The atmosphere there is simply legendary!
This summer, while representing her native Germany in FIBA international competition, Annika Soltau solidified her status as one of her country’s elite basketball talents, as her stock shot steadily upward with her stellar international play.
At the 2023 U18 European Championships, Soltau averaged 17.8 points per game; 11.8 rebounds per game; 2.0 blocks; and 1.3 steals per game with a 20.5 Efficiency Rating.
Soltau was then promoted to represent Germany at the 2023 U19 Championships, where she averaged a tournament-leading 2.1 blocks; along with, 12.4 points; 6.8 rebounds; 1.2 assists and 1.0 steals per game.
“Playing at the U19 World Cup in Spain was really special. The tournament enjoys a lot of international attention and Spanish people are huge basketball fans. That created a great atmosphere at the games,” enthuses Annika.
(Previously, Annika Soltau represented Germany in the 2022 U17 World Championship, where she averaged a tournament-leading 20.3 points; as well as, 8.5 rebounds; 2.8 steals; 2 blocks; and 2 assists.)
Soltau has proven that she is a force to be reckoned with both offensively and defensively against elite international competition.
ANNIKA SOLTAU 2023 FIBA BLOCKS
Initially, upon her May commitment to UW WBB, we had anticipated that (at the latest) Annika Soltau might join Washington mid-season at the beginning of 2024.
However, Soltau’s new pro team’s upcoming schedule mirrors the PAC-12 women’s basketball schedule, i.e., the regular season does not end until early March.
Eisvogel Coach Harald Janson indicated he was eager to begin player development with the über talented Soltau:
It is a really great honor for our program that with Annika one of the greatest German talents is moving to Freiburg. With Annika, too, our first task will be to prepare her physically for the 1st DBBL.
Considering Eisvogel’s track record of playoff success, they would want to keep Soltau for the entirety of their run for their league’s championship trophy.
Understandably, Husky fans may feel disappointed about Annika Soltau’s delayed arrival to the University of Washington.
With the recent announcement that the Washington Huskies will move to the B1G conference in 2024, we at least know that Soltau will be part of a strong core of Huskies players to start the new era against B1G competition.