The Concordia women's basketball team, under the direction of Tamlyn Tills (fourth season), look to have a great chance at eclipsing not only their nine-win mark from last season but quite possibly their 13-win season of two years ago.
Tills returns two full-time and two part-time starters from the 2004-05 squad, including two-time All-NIIC junior forward Atoi Sinclair (13 ppg, 10 rpg) and honorable mention sophomore guard Ellie Bravo. Added to that base is the largest recruiting class for Cougar basketball in many a year. While 5-foot-11 forward Kelly Glidewell of Hobart, Ind., is expected to make an impact in the post, a large part of the new class brings a decided local flavor. Included in that group are Alison Sansone (Trinity H.S.), Kari Zielke and Natasha Larry and junior transfer Julianne Schefke (Fenwick H.S.), who has played her first two collegiate seasons at North Central College and Morton Community College.
The home opener for the Cougars is set for Saturday at 1 p.m. versus the University of Chicago.
Men's basketball: The Cougar men are coming off a four-win season in 2004-05, but second-year head coach Brian Sommerhauser has also benefited from a large recruiting class. With just two returning starters and four lettermen in all, much remains to be discovered about this year's squad. However, the new squad looks to be quick and defensively sound, if pre-season results are any indication.
Sommerhauser has many possible candidates to join sophomore guard Andre Smith (6 ppg) and 6-foot-4 sophomore forward Bobby Smith (10 ppg, no relation to Andre). Top possibilities at this point include 6-5 sophomore Justin Gray, 6-4 sophomore Lafeyette Bell and 6-3 freshman Bryan Ganek at forward, and three-point shooting freshmen guards David Mikrut and Ryan Young.
The team must wait until Dec. 10 for their home opener against Augustana College.
A press release contributed to this report.