The women’s basketball team will play its first regular season game on Oct. 17 against the Lethbridge College Kodiaks, and they have a lot to learn before then.
“Right now our biggest characteristic is inexperience,” head coach Donovan Martin said in an interview as practice got under way in September.
Because the team is young, with 10 of the 14 players new to the team this year, Martin knows it could take time to meet their potential.
“I expect that we’ll have some rough spots to start the year,” he said.
The key, to Martin, is to work on gaining the experience necessary to excel in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC).
“I expect as our young players learn what it takes to get success in this league that we’ll have better results as the league goes along,” said Martin.
Kendell Kuntz, scoring guard for the SAIT team, has her own ideas on how the Trojans can look good in their season opener.
“Run,” said Kuntz, who is in her first year of business administration.
“Run lots to be in good shape, so that we don’t get tired in games.”
Kuntz has noticed the age difference between this year’s and last year’s teams.
She has found herself one of the older girls on the team in 2014.
“We’re a lot younger this year, because I’m one of the older girls this year, and last year coming in I was the youngest,” said Kuntz.
As one of the few returning players from last year, Kuntz looks forward to improving her own skills in her second year as a Trojan.
“I would like to improve on my leadership skills because that’s a role on the team that I’m taking this year, being one of three returning players,” she said.
Although Kuntz is a scoring guard, she is occasionally given the opportunity to play as point guard, a position she will grow into as the season continues.
“I want to improve my decision making,” said Kuntz.
“When I’m playing point guard I want to make good decisions pushing the ball up the floor.”
Martin has the Trojans practicing every day in hopes of improving on the fifth-place performance the Trojans had in last year’s ACAC championships.
“Obviously that would be the ultimate goal, the ultimate measure of improvement,” he said.
Although Martin thinks the team has strengths in perimeter shooting, and he thinks it can improve its defensive skills. But he believes the team’s inexperience will be in the way until the Trojans get through a few games.
“The only way to get any experience is to play.”
The Trojans were set for a pre-season Fall Classic tournament Oct. 2-4, with games against the Grande Prairie Regional College Wolves, the NAIT Ooks, and the Concordia University Thunder.
You can find the women’s basketball schedule on the Trojans’ website.