Women’s basketball adding depth in 2019

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Women’s basketball adding depth in 2019

Junior Julie Carini searches for an open teammate in a Nov. 4 scrimmage.

Junior Julie Carini searches for an open teammate in a Nov. 4 scrimmage.

Trey Kawugule

Junior Julie Carini searches for an open teammate in a Nov. 4 scrimmage.

Trey Kawugule

Trey Kawugule

Junior Julie Carini searches for an open teammate in a Nov. 4 scrimmage.

Guilford women’s basketball team impressed in the 2018-19 season. The team finished 20-6, only losing two Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) matchups, a record that led it to a regular-season ODAC title.

In 2019-20, the team will return four players who started all 26 games for the Quakers. The team did not graduate any players from the 2018-19 season.

Caitlin Davis and Julie Carini are two of those returners. The pair combined for 16.9 points and eight rebounds per game.

“I feel like we jumped right into the season with intense practices, but we are still trying to develop team chemistry,” said Davis. “We have several (first-years) that can make an impact immediately and we also return all of our starters from last season.”

Senior Miracle Walters returns following a season in which she led the team in scoring with 14.5 points per game. Walters also added five and a half rebounds per game and two assists.

Walters’ performance during the season garnered her many postseason accolades. She was tabbed as an All-ODAC selection, the second time she has been chosen as such.

”I think being able to step up and adjust to the role I need to play has been a big factor in my personal success,” Walters said. “Being versatile and adaptable is a big part of being able to help your team, and I think we have a lot of other people that can do that as well, which is why we have been so successful in past years.”

The stand out performer of the returning starters was sophomore Lindsay Gauldin. Gauldin finished the season averaging a double-double (13.5 points and 10 rebounds per game) and led the league in that category, recording 11 performances with double digits in those figures.

At the end of the season, Gauldin became the fourth women’s basketball player to win ODAC rookie of the year honors. Gauldin was the first to do so in over ten years.

The Greensboro native led the team in assists, rebounds and steals per game. Her best performance came against the University of Lynchburg, in which she recorded 30 points.

One challenge heading into this season is that the team will have to play without the reigning ODAC rookie of the year due to injury.

Splitting time last year at the point guard position was Brianna Allen. Allen scored five and a half points and an assist per game.

For her hand in the impressive development of the young 2018-19 squad, 16th-year Head Coach Stephanie Flamini was named the ODAC coach of the year. Flamini has a 267-160 coaching record as the head of the Quakers, and has once before collected an ODAC coach of the year award.

The 2019-20 team will look to add depth to a team that was at times forced to only play seven to nine players in a game.

Entering a fresh season, the team adds four first-years, one sophomore transfer and returns one junior who did not compete last year.

“I think going deep into our bench has been a struggle for us for a couple of years, ” Walters said. ”But, I’m looking for a change in that this season. The talent is all there, we just have to step up and be ready.”

“I think the biggest challenge will be to play consistently,” Davis said. “We have a lot of talent, but learning to play together as a team will be important. Our conference is very competitive, so being the most consistent team is critical.”

ODAC Women’s Basketball coaches selected Guilford College first in their 2019-20 preseason poll. The Quakers also received 45 votes in the D3hoops.com Preseason Top 25 Poll released Thursday, ranking them 27th in the nation preseason.

The team opens up play against Meredith College on Nov. 13. Last year the team dominated play against the Avenging Angels, winning 73-60.

In the 13-point victory, Gauldin recorded a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double, adding five steals. Davis tied Gauldin’s 14 points and added five rebounds in the effort.

 

Editor’s note: This story originally was published in Volume 106, Issue 5 of The Guilfordian on Nov. 8 2019.

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