Freshman trying to find role on guard-heavy team


Freshman Mara Muensterman celebrates with teammates after winning the 3-point contest on Saturday during Hoosier Hysteria at Assembly Hall. IDS file photo and Ben Mikesell

Six guards play at least 13 minutes per game for the IU women’s basketball team, which leaves freshman guard Maura Muensterman the odd one out in the Hoosiers’ large pool of young guards.

A former two-time Indiana high school state champion and Indiana Miss Basketball runner-up, Muensterman has the most assists in the history of Indiana high school basketball.

Her reputation might be why a fan asked IU Coach Teri Moren during her radio show Monday night with Greg Murray about Muensterman’s lack of minutes.

“Her situation is not unlike a lot of teams’ as a freshman,” Moren said. “She was recruited to play on the perimeter. As you guys well know, we have a lot of guards. What we don’t have is depth in the post ?right now.”

The Evansville native has played in only 10 of IU’s 16 games and is averaging 4.8 minutes per game that she does play in. After Friday’s loss to Ohio State, Moren mentioned how every player on her team had exceptional high school careers. That success does not always immediately translate to college success.

Other guards have separated themselves from Muensterman during practice, which is where decisions are made, Moren said. The coaching staff has considered giving the 6-foot Muensterman more of a role inside.

“We felt like, if there was one kid we could move over to that four spot, it was going to be Maura,” Moren said.

Then, sophomore Alexis Gassion began getting more time at the four spot, and a solid inside rotation of sophomores Jenn Anderson and Lyndsay Leikem and freshmen Amanda Cahill and Gassion developed.

It has been difficult for Muensterman to find minutes, but she has not been one to complain. She has worked hard in practice and has a large role in simulating future opponents as a member of the scout team, ?Moren said.

“Everybody has a role on this basketball team, and we have asked them to accept it and thrive in it and to love it,” Moren said. “She has accepted her role.”

Moren also took the time to congratulate the team on their impressive grades in the fall semester. The team had an average 3.2 GPA, which she said was its best in a long time.

The crowd at the radio show applauded when Moren announced this news.

“Some of our kids had their best semester ever that they have had here at IU,” Moren said. “Lot of credit to (Lorian) Price, who is our academic adviser and does a tremendous job.”

Moren said Price works tirelessly to help the ladies and to support them.

“But give our kids credit,” Moren said. “They still have to do the work. They still have to get to class. The priority in our program will always be academics.”

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