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Women's Basketball eager to start new season

On November 28, 2011

            Coming off a 17-14 overall last season and a third place conference finish, the 2011-2012 UB women's basketball team is looking to take the next step forward with more talent and a tighter knit unit on the court.  

This year's squad will have a total of five newcomers including two transfers and three freshman as well as five returning seniors to lead the pack. Second year head coach Stephanie Del Preore has a lot of high expectations this season for her team.

 "Our goal is to continue to improve on every practice and game and with five new kids, they picked up on our system rather quickly, which really helps us out," Del Preore said. "[We want to] continue to build our team chemistry, which right now is pretty good."

Some of the key returning players are senior guards Elinor Avny and Edna Marant, who averaged 11.2 and 8.1 points per game respectively. Also senior forward Julia Colley, who was second on the Purple Knights in rebounding a year ago with 5.7 per game will help up front with her strong defense abilities.

Del Perore believes that this will be the year that Avny will have her breakout season.

"She is a senior leader, is relentless by working very hard and has a great 3 point shot but she is starting to add other aspects of her game," Del Perore said. "Her passing and leadership skills have really improved 100 percent."

Of the new additions to the squad, two players freshman guard Jenna Hoffman and junior forward/center Tanisha Carter are expected to be important contributors. Hoffman will help and try to replace Elsebeth Birman, who transferred to University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. She will help in several areas of the game with her quickness, strong play off the dribble and passing ability. Carter who, transferred from Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic, CT, will provide athleticism, a strong presence on the court and defensive capabilities.

  "We have a really fast paced team and we will be looking to run transition most of the time," Marant said. "[By] Playing help defense and by being so fast [as a team] it will help us out [in order to be successful this season]."

         The Purple Knights will play a total of 26 games this season 15 of which, will be at home in Harvey Hubbell Gym. According to Del Perore, some of the tougher East Coast Conference teams this year will include C.W. Post and St. Thomas Aquinas College, while mentioning the ECC will be a lot stronger this year with arrival of the University of District of Columbia to the conference.

"We will be a very big talking team and will work hard on every shot and never give up," senior guard Marie Biondi said. "As long as we are here [as a group] and know what to do while enjoying the game, we know what will pay off in the end [for us]."


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