Coach Flamini hits her stride in 2012 with tenacious team, successful season

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Coach Flamini hits her stride in 2012 with tenacious team, successful season

Coach Flamini instructs her team during a timeout. The Lady Quakers sit atop the ODAC standings at 12-1 and 15-3 overall.

Coach Flamini instructs her team during a timeout. The Lady Quakers sit atop the ODAC standings at 12-1 and 15-3 overall.

Zach Morgan

Coach Flamini instructs her team during a timeout. The Lady Quakers sit atop the ODAC standings at 12-1 and 15-3 overall.

Zach Morgan

Zach Morgan

Coach Flamini instructs her team during a timeout. The Lady Quakers sit atop the ODAC standings at 12-1 and 15-3 overall.

Electric and intense, the action on the court sizzles with the precise cohesion of a team come full circle. Head Basketball Coach and Guilford’s Senior Women’s Administrator, Stephanie Flamini zones in on her team.

In her ninth season at Guilford College, Flamini owns the second place record for all-time wins in the history of Guilford College women’s basketball.  Currently, her 2012 Guilford College Women’s basketball team is tied for first place in the ODAC division at 11-1, with an overall 14-3 standing. Not too shabby.

Coach Flamini, hails from King of Prussia, Pa, named after the King of Prussia Inn, originally a cabin built in 1709 by Welsh Quakers, William and Janet Rees. Attending Clarion University, 1989 – 92 on a basketball scholarship, Flamini helped the Eagles win a Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference title and two NCAA Tournament appearances. Flamini was an integral part of the Clarion teams that made it to the national quarterfinals in 1991 and the Sweet Sixteen in 1992.

Next Flamini moved on to West Chester University in Pennsylvania, graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and an Associate’s degree in Elementary Education. Flamini went on to earn a Master’s degree, at West Chester in Athletic Administration, while working as an Graduate Assistant Coach from 1996 – 1998.

You can hear a minute Pennsylvania accent in Coach Flamini’s voice, usually when she is cracking wise. A dry sense of humor belies her watchful countenance, as a hint of mischief glints across her face.

In a Jan. 19 ODAC podcast, ODAC Commissioner Brad Bankston recalled Coach Flamini calling her own speech at his Rotary Club luncheon a “list of clichés.”

“Her sense of humor is dry and she always is smiling,” said Bankston. “I can remember few pre-season media day talks, but her 2011 version with “clichés” was priceless, made even better by the number of coaches before her using several from her planned list.”

Coach Flamini gives her team all of the credit.

“Jaz is doing a great job of leading this team this season,” said Flamini of Senior guard Jazlyn Gibbs. “She’s grown in the way she leads.”

“I mean, Jaz could go out there and just try to be the lead scorer all the time. That’s easy to do, that’s not a bad thing, but when you have other players who are just as good who can help you, it’s hard to swallow that and dish off to them. “

The best thing for Coach Flamini to see is the individual talent of her players coming together as one.

“ Something Coach said to me this year that stuck with me since she said it was ‘Play for the G,’“ said junior guard Brittany Atwater. “She was talking about how we can’t play selfish basketball. In order to be successful this season we have to play together as a team.”

“ She said this during practice and pointed to the ‘G’, on the front of our practice jerseys to symbolize the team,” said Atwater. “Ever since she said that, we did as she asked and have had a successful season so far.”

Individually, the players look to Flamini for direction in other aspects of their lives.

“Working with Coach has been a great experience,” said sophomore forward Gabby Oglesby. “I love that she cares so much about things that go beyond the basketball court. We can go to her with issues and she genuinely cares. I am very proud to be a part of this extremely talented team and to be coached by her.“

Flamini admits this is her favorite season so far.  She came to Guilford after building Chowan University’s team, because she wanted to coach in the ODAC division.

“I won’t kid you, it wasn’t easy; this has been a long, hard road,” said Flamini. ”Even when you think you’re making headway in the ODAC, everybody else is too.”

“Coach Flamini was a great addition to the ODAC, in coaches, a number of years ago,” said Bankston.  “She has increased her involvement in the ODAC serving as Guilford’s SWA.”

So this is something special, this team. It’s palpable when you see them in action. Confident and working together, they are living, breathing proof to their coach’s team building expertise.

“Coach Flamini really helped lead the program this year by believing in us,” said Gibbs. “Sometimes, it’s hard to tell if a coach really believes that their team can win, but Coach really shows us that she feels we are unstoppable. I really feel that this year the entire team, coaches included, really have something special going.

“I feel that Coach Flamini has taken the time out to get to know all of her players on a personal level, and by doing this, strengthened the relationships we have with her, on and off the court,” said Gibbs. “The main thing that Coach does is to listen. If we have a concern, or if there is ever anything we need, on or off the court, she’s done a great job of providing support. This 2011-2012 season has truly been amazing. “

And there it is.

For more Flamini, check out the ODAC podcast at the following address. http://www.guilfordquakers.com/information/quakernews

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