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Saturday, May 18
The Indiana Daily Student

sports women's basketball

Young women's basketball team to debut against St. Ambrose

Women's Basketball v. Michigan State

The IU women’s basketball team will have to overcome the loss of four seniors, including the program’s eighth-leading scorer of all time, as it begins its season with an exhibition game against St. Ambrose at 7 p.m. today in Assembly Hall.

“We’re going to try different things,” IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said. “What you see on Thursday is not what you’re going to see on Tuesday. I’m trying to figure out who can start, who can finish, and who can play in the middle.”

The lost seniors from last year’s squad are Jori Davis, Hope Elam, Whitney Lindsay, and Andrea McGuirt. They combined to supply IU with 68.7 percent of its points, 79.4 percent of assists, 77.9 percent of free throws, and 54.6 of minutes in the 2010-11 season.

The remaining cast is a young one and the game will mark the beginning of a third year or more at IU for only three players.

Despite IU’s lack of experience, senior forward Georgie Jones said she sees the glass as half-full.

“I look at it more as fun,” she said. “I think a lot of the freshmen that came in kind of keep me motivated and energized because of their energy, and they’re so young. It gives me a chance to lead them more and give my two cents on some of the things I’ve experienced.”

Legette-Jack said she has a plan to compensate for such a loss of production and experience. Rather than having a predetermined scorer, she said she wants her team to spread the ball as much as possible.

“We don’t have a good go-to player, so if I’ve got the ball, I’ve got to really get myself a look and see if I’ve got an opportunity to score,” she said. “Do I have an opportunity to drive it? Do I have an opportunity to pass it? If we all have that mindset, I think we’re going to get a lot more fluidity in our offense, and the offense is what’s really hurt us. I thought we did a pretty good job defensively as a team.”

Legette-Jack noted that her squad is already showing their youth in practice. The past few practices, she said she has been harder on them because she wants to prepare them for the game.

“At the beginning, we were having a lot more fun,” she said. “Now everyone’s getting tight because the games are going to be taking place. Eventually, as we move forward and I get adamant like that, my hope is that they understand.”

Legette-Jack said she knows growing pains come along with coaching so many young players, but she remains confident that eventually they’ll get past their learning curve starting Thursday.

“It’s just a different team,” she said. “It’s always exciting, it’s always fresh, and there’s always good energy behind that.”

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