SEATTLE, Wash. - The Washington womens basketball team begins its preparation for the 2002-2003 season with its first official practice Saturday, Oct. 12, in Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. Practice will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., prior to the Husky football game with Arizona at 12:30 p.m.
Washington opens its 29th season of womens basketball with five starters and 11 letterwinners returning from last years squad that tied for second in the Pac-10 Conference and advanced as far as the third round of the WNIT. In fact three of those returning starters, senior Loree Payne, junior Andrea Lalum and junior Giuliana Mendiola, were starters on the 2000-01 squad that won a share of the Pac-10 championship and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament.
This years squad features a wealth of veteran leadership with five seniors, three juniors and four sophomores. Added to the mix is one returning redshirt freshman and a talented trio of incoming freshmen.
Leading the way for the Huskies this year will be All-America candidates Loree Payne and Giuliana Mendiola. Both were All-Pac-10 first-team selections from last year. In her third season as a Husky team captain, Payne led UW in scoring last year with 14.3 points per game. She is nearing Washingtons top-10 scoring list as she enters her senior season with 1,250 points and is No. 10 on the Pac-10s career three-pointers made list with 179.
Mendiola, in her second season as a team captain, was the second-leading rebounder on the team with 5.5 boards per game in 2001-02, in addition to her 12.5 points per game. Mendiola boasted the second-best assist to turnover ratio in the Pac-10 last season.
Husky Coaching Staff
Aiming to guide the Huskies to their sixth postseason appearance during her brief tenure, UW head coach June Daugherty enters her seventh season at the helm of the womens basketball program. She has an overall record of 100-78 at Washington and a 13-year career head coaching mark of 223-152. Sunny Smallwood and Mike Daugherty both enter their seventh season as assistants to Daugherty, while Shimmy Gray enters her third year on staff.
The Washington womens basketball team faces yet another challenging schedule in 2002-03, a lineup which features 10 teams that competed in the post-season last year, six in the NCAA Tournament and four in the WNIT. Husky fans first opportunity to see the team in action will be an exhibition game with Bay Area Pro-Am, Sunday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. at Bank of America Arena. UW will make its season debut on the road at Boise State Nov. 22, followed by a trip to Lubbock, Texas to face Texas Tech, Nov. 24. It is the third straight-year UW has opened the season away from Seattle. The Huskies will make their home debut hosting the Seattle Times Classic, Nov. 29-30, welcoming Kentucky, Saint Bonaventure and Pacific to Seattle. Washingtons other preseason tournament will be at North Carolina State, Dec. 6-7. Additional teams competing in Raleigh will be Florida and Houston. UW will host three non-conference games, also in December with Wisconsin, Dec. 2, San Francisco, Dec. 20, and Iowa State, Dec. 22. Washington opens the always competitive Pac-10 schedule with in-state rival Washington State in Pullman, Dec. 28. The second-ever Pac-10 Conference postseason tournament will be held at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., March 7-10.
UW Women's Basketball To Take Part In Breast Cancer Fundraiser
Washington womens basketball has volunteered to participate in a fundraiser for the UW Medical Center called The 2002 Basketball Challenge A Full Court Press Against Breast Cancer. The event will be held Sunday, Oct. 13, at Key Arena, from 2-4 p.m. Activities include a Sonics preseason intrasquad scrimmage and skills challenge. The UW womens basketball team will assist in gathering donations for UW breast cancer programs during the event. Celebrity guests include basketball legend Magic Johnson, Storm guard Sue Bird, Will Ferrell from "Saturday Night Live," Frankie Muniz from "Malcolm In The Middle" and others. The event is open to the public and is free of charge.
|Glenn Nelson is the co-founder and former head coach of the Dragons AAU girls basketball team in Seattle and will coach the Triple Threat 87s traveling team. Glenn also is the founder and operator of the popular girls basketball Web site, www.HoopGurlz.com.|
A native of Seattle, Glenn was a national-award-winning basketball writer and columnist for The Seattle Times for nearly two decades and has been published in books and various national magazines. He currently is the Managing Editor of TheInsiders.com (www.TheInsiders.com), an online sports network.