Lady Braves keep focus on victory
By G’Linda Bethea
The UNCP’s Women’s Basketball team jumped off with their first game Nov. 15 against Mount Olive.
The team has picked up new players this year, and they have signed National Letters of Intent, including Jamiasha Ward, Kha’isha Thomas, Sarah Gaffney and L’oreal Price. Freshmen L’oreal Price, from Southeast Raleigh High School has an injured ankle.
They are coached by John Haskins, who led the women to a record of 15-13 along with a 10-10 record in the Peach Belt Conference during the 2005-06 season.
The 5’7” guard and two-year high school captain earned first-team all-conference and played prep ball at her high school.
“I’m bummed that it’s hurt, but I guess everything happens for a reason,” Price said. The Southeast Raleigh grad is enjoying her first year here at UNCP and her involvement with the team.
On the court you can find the Lady Braves practicing, but they can also be found hanging out off the court, according to Price.
“We have good chemistry,” she said.
Coach Haskins seconded Price’s comment and said the Lady Braves are unique.
“They get along well together and are very hardworking,” he said.
The Lady Braves have been gearing up with practice drills.
They are working on “fundamental drills, 5 on 5, and breakdown drills to work on offense and defense,” Haskins said.
“Our passing and decision making are the areas we need improvement on,” he added as he summed up his comment on the team’s practices.
Price said there are differences between collegiate basketball and high school basketball.
“It’s a faster pace, bigger people and a shot clock,” Price said as she compared the high school and collegiate levels of basketball.
She especially looks forward to playing two teams, North Carolina Central University and Fayetteville State University. She is prepared for the first game as well.
Price said she is excited and ready to get the season started.
“I think we'll win,” she said. The team’s advantage, according to Coach Haskins, and his coaching philosophy should help lead them to a victory.
“Experienced girls with college experience” is what Haskins perceives as the team's advantage.
And his coaching philosophy is just as normal as any other coach.
“Trying to prepare them the best way I can,” Haskins concluded.