Seasoned Trojans Set to Contend in 2017-2018
UPLAND, Ind. – The Taylor women’s basketball team will commence its 2017-2018 campaign on Saturday, as the team travels to Northwestern Ohio to tale on the Racers at 1:00 pm. Saturday’s season-opener at UNOH will mark the debut on the TU sidelines for head coach Jody Martinez.
The Trojans will have plenty of experience, as 11 players return, including all five starters, from last year’s 13-18 squad. Despite the familiarity in personnel, the team will look much different under Martinez’s style of play, as TU will play at a much quicker pace than in past years.
Taylor will be looking to cement itself as one of the top teams in the Crossroads League, as the experienced Trojans are receiving votes in the NAIA Preseason Top-25 Poll for a second-straight year, and the coaches from around the Crossroads League voted TU as the third-best team in the league this preseason.
Seniors Cassidy Wyse and Josie Cobb, along with junior Kendall Bradbury highlight the returning experience for Taylor, as the trio gained preseason attention from the league. Bradbury was selected to the Preseason All-Crossroads League First-Team, Wyse was voted to the Preseason All-Crossroads League Second-Team and Cobb earned a spot on the Preseason All-Crossroads League Honorable Mention.
Bradbury returns for her third season wearing the purple and gold after a sensational sophomore season, where the junior averaged 21.5 points per game (third in NAIA) and 9.5 rebounds per game (17th in NAIA) to take home NAIA Third-Team All-American and All-Crossroads League First-Team honors. Bradbury also became the fastest player in TU history to reach 1,000 career points, doing so in just 50 career games.
Wyse delivered 12.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game to earn All-Crossroads League Honorable Mention a year ago, and Cobb added 9.2 points per game, while shooting 40.9 percent from three-point range to rank 20th in the nation in three-point shooting percentage.
In addition to Bradbury, Cobb and Wyse, juniors Aubrey Wright and Lacey Garrett each played in all 31 games last year and will provide additional experience and leadership in the rotation, while sophomores Sydney Huffman, Haley Stratman, Jamie Netzley, Abby Buchs and Becca Buchs will see time on the court as well.
The freshman duo of Lauren James and Kiara Nieto, along with senior Sierra Wilson will also add to the depth on Martinez’s squad.
“The girls have brought a consistent energy and passion each and every day so far and I look forward to that continuing throughout the season,” Martinez explained. “We will simply do our best to be the best and compete for the Crossroads League Championship.”
The Trojans will open the season on the road, as the team travels to UNOH on Saturday for a 1:00 pm matchup. TU will then return home for a three-game homestand on Paul Patterson Court inside Don Odle Arena, beginning with No. 14 Indiana Tech on Wednesday, November 1, followed by Governors State on November 4 and Concordia on November 6.