Catching Up With Coach J
Nov. 29, 2007
Hello Husky Fans-
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and that between all the feasting you've saved room for lots of basketball because the season is underway and we've hit the floor running! Since our season opener at Kansas State we have played seven games in 15 days, so there is much to tell! Let's begin...
The staff has been busy scouting opponents and preparing the team for each game, often with little time between one contest and the next. Though I have an incredibly dedicated and hard-working staff, they still know how to have fun and a prime example occurred during our trip to Hawaii when we attended a traditional Luau. I am proud to report that Director of Operations Wingate Smith won the male Hula contest; coconuts, grass skirt and all! Coach Smith's hula performance paled only in comparison to Coach Applin's efforts on stage as he learned the rhythmic steps of traditional Hawaiian dancers. He was a crowd pleaser and though the video of his efforts is perfect MTV material, it shall remain in the office until after his eventual try-out for 'Dancing with the Stars.' Well done staff!
On a more serious note, our staff is thrilled to announce that inaugural recruiting efforts paid off during the early signing period when our top three recruits signed National Letters of Intent. It is with great excitement that we welcome guard Kristi Kingma (Mill Creek, Wash.), forward Liz Lay (Oklahoma City, Okla.) and forward Mollie Williams (Cerritos, Calif.) to our Husky family for the 2008-2009 season. You can click here to learn more about each of our future Huskies and their respective accomplishments at the High School level.
With as many games as we have played recently the transition from one opponent to the next has been a quick one. The lessons learned from game to game have begun to carry-over, and the results are beginning to show as we develop a true sense of what it means to play 'Husky basketball'. We began the season on the road with games at Kansas State and Gonzaga. Though it's only been 18 days since those first two games, already we look like an entirely different team. Our recent wins in the Husky Classic over Idaho and Arkansas State show a Husky squad much more committed to defense and rebounding, and with a greater sense of who we are as a team. Between our first two road games and this past weekend's Husky Classic the team traveled to Hawaii to play in the Waikiki Beach Marriott Classic. We played three games in four days and opened against host Hawaii on the second day of our trip. After losing a close one to Hawaii by a score of 80-75, we beat Northern Arizona the following evening (83-70) for our first win of the season! On the final day of the tournament we played undefeated UC Davis and despite a double-double effort by freshman Jess McCormack we lost 69-58. Jess was named to the All-Tournament Team for the Waikiki Beach Marriott Classic, and this past weekend at the Husky Classic senior Emily Florence earned All-Tournament honors and sophomore Sami Whitcomb was named Tournament MVP.
Practice continues to go well and with as many games as we've played recently we have plenty to work on. As always, our emphasis is on team defense, rebounding, and conditioning. Since the season began we have demonstrated vast improvement in these areas. A few of our Huskies continue to battle injuries, but we remain optimistic about their progress and hopeful for their speedy recovery and return to the floor.
In case you missed us last weekend we would like to invite you to come see your Huskies in action as we take on UC Irvine this Sunday, December 2 at 2pm. Next Tuesday we face Pepperdine at 7pm, and then hit the road for a Friday night show-down at Boise State.
We hope you will come out and cheer on the excitement that is Husky Basketball!
See you at the Bank, and GO DAWGS!
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