At a midseason
University of Utah womens basketball practice, Associate Head
Coach Joe Legerski wrapped things up by running the team through a free-throw
shooting drill. The drill called for each player to make one free throw.
Any miss from one of the 14 players resulted in the entire teams
running wind sprints. Three times the team lined up to drain one free
throw. Three times one person missed. Three times the entire team ran
Not ready to pack it in for
the season, the Utes picked it up in the second half of conference play,
winning five of their last six games. The team showed incredible heart
by winning its last two conference games on the road against San Diego
State and Nevada-Las Vegas. Those two wins moved the Utes into the number
five seed for the Mountain West Conference Tournament, setting up a rubber
match game with UNLV, as the Rebels had defeated the Utes at the Huntsman
Center in the teams first meeting. Of course, that also meant the
Rebels were playing on their home court at the Las Vegas conference tournament
site. The Utes left their shooting eye at home, going 28 percent from
the field, and the Rebels handed the Utes a 57-38 loss, ending any hopes
of a 12th trip to the NCAA Tournament. (As a post-tournament note, the
Rebels will lose home-court advantage for the conference tournament in
2004 when it moves to a neutral site in Denver.)
years squad was led by its seniors. Center Lauren Beckman averaged
14 points and two blocks per game and topped the team in rebounds with
an average of seven per game. Her consistent play landed her postseason
honors as a 2001-02 Mountain West Conference first team member, the second
year in a row she has been selected as a top five player. Lindsay Herbert
finished a stellar Ute career by gaining All-Conference second team honors
and leading the team in scoring with a 14.7 per game average. Forward
Erin Gibbons was one of the teams most consistent performers. She
was the teams long-distance specialist, making 49 percent of her
three-point attempts, and garnered All-Conference Honorable Mention accolades.
Katherine McColl stepped into the starting lineup for the first time as
a senior and was a consistent performer who often led the team in rebounding.
Were a close-knit team, but I feel a special bond with the
seniors because of the great times we have had over our careers,
The players off the bench
were all freshmen or sophomores; as the season progressed, so did their
minutes and confidence. Weve had to take a different approach
to all aspects of this team as compared to last year, says Elliott.
We refocused on fundamentals because weve wanted to bring
our younger players up slowly to build their confidence.
A trio of guards rotated off
the bench in 2001-02 and will provide a bright future for seasons to come.
Utah natives Lana Sitterud (Lone Peak High School) and Sharee Hendrix
(Highland High School) each had moments where they shined on the floor.
Sitterud displayed flashes of her long-distance shooting ability throughout
the year, and Hendrix, blessed with quality basketball genes from her
father, former Ute stalwart Manny Hendrix BS94, will be a solid
player for the Utes. Oregon native and sophomore Sarah Wobbe provided
minutes as the backup point guard and displayed a knack for finding open
JD Davis BS86
is a frequent contributor to Continuum and a college basketball
junkie, and has coached many perfect games from his couch in front of