Women’s basketball ready to get rolling
After ending last season in the first round of the Women’s NIT, the Lady Trojans basketball team is preparing for the 2013-14 season with a new look.
UALR head coach Joe Foley will go into his 11th season with the team on Nov. 10 when the team will face Sam Houston State at the Jack Stephens Center.
“Well actually, our tradition has been pretty good here lately,” Coach Foley said. “We actually would love to get into the NCAA tournament and see what goes from there. So actually we got to work hard and do a lot of things to reach that goal.”
The Lady Trojans bring back seven players from last season including starters senior guard Taylor Ford, senior forward Hannah Fohne, senior guard Nia Gregory, junior guard Taylor Gault, junior forward Kiera Clark, junior guard Ka’Nesheia Cobbins, and sophomore forwards Shanity James and Carolee Dillard.
The team only lost two players: three-point specialist Janette Merriex, who graduated last year, and Morgan Bolton, who is currently at SMU this season. In addition, Foley and the Lady Trojans bring in six new players, which include six freshmen.
The freshmen are Antoina Robinson, Di’Mond Jackson, Kaitlyn Pratt, Keanna Keys, Lexus Williams, and Sharde Collins.
Collins had a successful season last year at Liberty-Eylau after averaging 15.8 points, 8.8 rebounds, 4.0 steals, and 3.5 assists. She was also the 72nd ranked guard in the state by ESPNW. “We think she will definitely help us quite a bit though we needed a good shooter,” Foley said about Collins.
In addition to Collins, the Trojans also adds sophomore Lexus Williams, who transferred from SMU this season. She averaged 2.5 points per game and 2.3 rebounds in 22 games last season. Williams also competed at North Little Rock High School for all four seasons including a state championship in 2010. She will have to sit out this season due to the NCAA transfer policy.
“As a team, just to get everybody on the same page,” said Ford. “Like right now, we’re really trying to focus on getting ready to know the offense and defense.”
Ford had a breakout season after finishing with 9.9 points per game and dishing out a career-high 4.5 assists. Gault, who was Sun Belt Freshmen of the Year in 2011, returns to the team as the top scorer with 13.9 points per game from last season. She scored a career-high 33 points in the season opener at Tulsa last season.
UALR will begin Sun Belt Conference play on Thursday, Jan. 2 at Texas State. To see the 2013-14 Lady Trojans basketball team, the Meet the Trojans event is set for Monday, Nov. 4 at the Jack Stephens Center.