@LATechWBB Opens Official Team Workouts
Oct. 3, 2017
RUSTON – Although Louisiana Tech has been working out since the beginning of the fall quarter in early September, the Lady Techsters began official team practice this past weekend as head coach Brooke Stoehr and Co. prepare for the start of the 2017-18 season.
After surpassing the external expectations of most people last year – Tech finished fourth in the Conference USA standings after being tabbed to finish 12th in the preseason coaches’ poll and earned its first postseason tournament berth since 2011– , this year’s group will most likely have more of a bulls eye on its back.
However, Stoehr isn’t concerned with outside expectations at this point. She is simply focused on her young team getting better each and every day, something that started this summer and that has continued in the fall quarter.
“I thought the team had a good month of September as far as individual workouts, strength and conditioning and just coming together as a unit,” said Stoehr, who enters her second season on the Lady Techster sideline. “The group has brought consistent energy to our workouts and has been fun to work with each day.
“The level of competition in workouts has been taken to the next level. We have a group of committed returners and newcomers that are challenging each other daily to improve as individuals and as a team. I have been pleased with our energy and desire to get better.”
Tech returns only six players who saw action in a Lady Techster uniform last year, although every one of those six saw significant playing time on the court. Kierra Anthony, Kierra Lang and Alexus Malone all started the vast majority of the 32 games while Reauna Cleaver, Anna McLeod and Daria McCutcheon all played important minutes coming off the bench.
Those six will provide experience and leadership while the eight LA Tech newcomers get adjusted to life in the Columbia blue.
A pair of junior college guards could see significant minutes for Tech this fall in Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College transfer Maria Delgado and Hutchinson Community College transfer Taylor Stahly. Stahly and Delgado could help in a number of areas, including improving on last year’s 31 percent mark from behind the three-point line.
After averaging almost 13 points a game and shooting 48 percent from the three-point line as a sophomore, Stahly earned all-conference and all-region honors. She became the all-time three-pointers made leader in Hutchinson program history with 227.
“Taylor has brought a high level of consistency to each workout that has been very good for this group,” said Stoehr. “She shows up to work each day and is very coachable. Her ability to make shots is what most people will notice, but she makes so many other things happen around her by seeing the floor and being able to deliver a pass to a teammate at the right time or just being in the right spot defensively. Taylor’s work ethic and consistency has made a positive impact on the program and her teammates.”
Delgado is another three-point threat for Tech. During her sophomore year at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M she connected on 85 three-pointers while earning NJCAA first team all-American honors and Region II Player of the Year accolades. She averaged 16 points a game last season.
“Maria brings a great deal of energy to the court when she competes,” said Stoehr. “She has the ability to shoot the three and adds strength on the perimeter. Her international experience gives us a different dimension. Maria got here at the start of the fall quarter and has competed well in all aspects and been a nice addition to the group.”
Louisiana Tech opens the season Nov. 10 against Grambling State. The Lady Techsters played 16 home games this year, including marquee non-conference match-ups against Clemson and Memphis.
Season tickets are on sale and can be purchased by calling 318-257-3631 or emailing TechTickets@latech.edu.
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