So, We Begin Again
Another season of Clark University women's basketball kicks off in earnest on Tuesday with a slate that will feature 12 home contests.
Larry Bird Would Be Proud
Clark University head coach Pat Glispin is entering her 33rd season on the Clark sidelines, making her the eighth longest tenured active women's basketball coach in the country, regardless of division.
Not Many Better
Speaking of Glispin, she enters this season with 513 career victories, good for the 25h most wins in NCAA Division III history.
The Cougars were picked to finish ninth in the New England Women's And Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) preseason coaches' poll. Crosstown rival WPI garnered nine first-place votes to earn the league's top spot.
Incredibly, the Scarlet and White return 99.4 percent of their scoring from a season ago.
The Wild One
Haley Wilder (Rindge, N.H.) is the only player who started all 25 games a season ago. She finished fourth on the team in scoring, averaging 6.0 points per game as well as 3.3 rebounds a night.
Sam, I Am
Lead guard Sam O'Gara (Worcester, Mass.) returns for her junior campaign after leading the team in scoring for the second straight season. As a sophomore in 2015-16, O'Gara averaged 13.0 points and 3.9 assists per night. Her best game of the season came against Emerson in mid-January, where she erupted for 28 points to go along with four rebounds and six assists.
Aretha Sullivan is coming off of a junior season in which she averaged 7.5 points per game and had eight double-figure scoring efforts, including a season-best 18 in a loss at Springfield.
Sophomore Ogechi Ezemma (Hope Valley, R.I.) had a strong first season with the Cougars, averaging 8.4 points and 7.2 rebounds – good for eighth in the league. Ezemma had 11 games with double figure scoring outputs and finished with a pair of double-doubles, including a monster 13-point, 13-rebound display in the season finale.
If the final game of last season is any indication, expect big things from graduate student Sami Dokus. She ended 2015-16 by scoring a season-high 12 points on 5-for-5 shooting, including a pair of three pointers in the Cougars loss at Smith.
Sam O'Gara finished last season as the league's No. 1 thief, swiping 2.6 steals a night. When coupled with the 1.7 steals every time out from Ogechi Ezemma, it's easy to see why the Scarlet and White led the NEWMAC in steals (10.5).
Clark finished third in the NEWMAC in made free throws (300) and second in free throws attempted (488).
Squeeze The Orange
One area where the Cougars will need to improve is taking care of the ball. They committed an average of 22.6 turnovers a game – tenth most out of 11 teams in the conference a season ago.