Ada — After improving from 8-19 in 2011-12 to a 19-9 finish in 2012-13, the East Central University women’s basketball team is looking to continue to improve for the 2013-14 season. For their efforts a year ago, the Lady Tigers were picked to finish fourth this season in the Great American Conference preseason poll, as voted on by the league’s head coaches.
“We always want to improve,” said interim head coach Emily Holombek. “We won 19 games last year, so we want 20 this season. We want to advance to the finals of the conference tournament instead of the semifinals. If we can win 20 games and make the finals, we will be in contention to get a bid to nationals, and that is the ultimate goal.”
Bolstering the Lady Tigers' efforts to improve is the fact that they lost just three players from a season ago, return six and add three to the mix who sat out the 2012-13 season on redshirts. The returning group includes four starters from a year ago and two others who started in at least five games during the season. ECU will also add just four new faces to the roster for a total of 13 players.
“By keeping the roster size down, it helps us get more individual attention and reps in practice,” Holombek said. “It also makes it easier for team chemistry to happen.”
Two of the key returners at the post for the Lady Tigers are junior Dilan Webster and senior Ashley Robison, who both earned All-Great American Conference honors in 2012-13. Webster led ECU with 13.1 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game to earn All-GAC Second Team honors. Robison was named to the All-GAC Honorable Mention Team after averaging 8.7 points and 7.4 rebounds per outing.
The Lady Tigers also return senior forward Alycea Price, who tallied 8.6 points and 7.1 rebounds per game in her first season with ECU.