Wednesday, November 17, 2010

2010-11 Felician College Women’s Basketball Outlook

Last year was a turnaround season for the Felician College women’s basketball program. The Golden Falcons posted the second-best record in school history at 16-11, improved by 11 victories over the previous season, and defeated a nationally-ranked team in Virginia State University. They also had a winning record in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference play for the first time ever.

However, the Golden Falcons’ 10-9 CACC mark was good for only fifth place in the North Division, and they missed the league playoffs by the margin of a single game.

“Last year we set a standard for the way we want a Felician women’s basketball team to play,” said third-year head coach Steve Fagan. “Understanding how fine the line is between making the playoffs and not making it, we’re committed to playing hard every possession and letting things take care of themselves.”

The Golden Falcons return four starters from last year’s squad. While they will have to replace the production and leadership of Janelle Biamonte, the school’s fourth all-time leading scorer, Fagan is relying on his squad’s experience to produce a winning brand of basketball.

“Our returning starters will set the tone for our style of play – playing with confidence and being aggressive at both ends of the floor,” Fagan said. “We want to get out and run in the open floor.”

GUARDS: Returning starters Tierra Cleaves (27 GP, 7.1 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 4.6 apg in 2009-10), a senior, and junior Destiny Barnette (27 GP, 6.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg) are the catalysts for Fagan’s preferred aggressive style. Freshman Gisell Peguero, the likely first guard off the bench, will fit well into the system.
“Tierra gets up and down the court as quickly as anyone in our league,” Fagan said. “Destiny makes our defense go, and has worked hard to improve her offensive game. Gisell is a court-savvy point guard who likes to get out and distribute in the open floor.”

Seniors Breanne DeFalco (12 GP, 0.3 ppg, 0.3 rpg) and Shannon Gilmartin (16 GP, 1.1 ppg, 0.4 rpg) have excellent shooting range and can keep defenses honest.

WINGS: Freshmen Katrina Plummer and Jacquel Saunders are the leading candidates to start at small forward. Both are versatile swing players who can create off the dribble or knock down a jump shot. Senior Nicole Degenhardt, a first-year walk-on, brings toughness and an ability to get to the basket.

POSTS: Returning all-conference power forward Quay Baskerville (27 GP, 13.9 ppg, 7.0 rpg) will be asked to accept more responsibility, playing an inside-out offensive game while defending the opponent’s best player. 6-foot-1 center Jessica Ford (27 GP, 4.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg), a third-year starter, looks for a breakout season. Freshman Ashley Morris is versatile around the basket and can back up at both positions.

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