Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Home Games Up Next Against UW and WSU

On Friday evening (1/18 @ 7PM) we take on Washington at home. When I think about the Huskies, I still lapse into memories of their 2016/2017 Cinderella team that had the leading scorer in the nation, won 29 games, and lost a great battle in the Sweet Sixteen to Mississippi State. Man, were they fun to watch.

Kelsey Plum went no.# 1 to the WNBA, Chantel Osahor graduated, Mike Neighbors left to coach his alma mater, Arkansas, and Aari McDonald transferred to Arizona. Jeez!

Well, two seasons later they're in the middle of re-building. Jody Winn is the new coach and Amber Melgoza, a junior from Santa Barbara, is their motor. Darcy Rees is their 6'-4" Aussie, out of Adelaide. Strong building blocks. They've had some good wins this season - they've beaten Duke, George Mason, and Ohio State, but right now they're 8 and 9 overall and 1 and 4 in PAC12 play.


Jody's in a rich recruiting area and Washington is a great school. Soon, I figure, they'll be back in the hunt.

On Sunday (1/20) we play WSU at noon, a team with a number of international players.

When I hear the Cougars roster it sounds like a Eurobasket All Star team. Their star is from Varna,
Bulgaria and they call her Bobbi Buckets - that's because her real name is Borislava Hristova. Jovana Subasic is from Sabac, Serbia. Next, we go further east to Israel and introduce Shir Levy from Ness Ziona. Hailing from Lyon, France we have Johanna Muzet. Then on the other side of the planet we land in Logan, Australia and give you Ula Motuga. To meet Maria Kostourkova  one would think Russia, but she's a 6'-4" forward from Lisbon, Portugal. To find Alexys Swedlund you might think Scandinavia, but she's a 6' guard from Rapid City, South Dakota. Michaela Jones is from Nebraska and the three Molina sisters come from Kailua Kona, Hawaii - Cherilyn, Celena, and Chanelle.


Wouldn't you love to coach this group? What a kick to listen in on one of their crucial timeouts - everyone talking at once in seven really different languages. I'll bet their trash talk can get colorful too. What about their basketball? Overall they're 7 and 9. In conference games they're 2 and 3. In their three point win against Washington, Bobbi Buckets had 38 points. Their team hit 11 of 24 three pointers. And 4 of 11 free throws (Jovana missed all of hers.) Their other important win was by three points over Nebraska.

Their new coach is Kamie Ethridge and I'll bet she's having a great time. I've only seen Bobbi on tape, but man can she shoot. June Dougherty was let go at the end of last season after recruiting this amazing menagerie of talent. I've always wondered how you would recruit if you coached in Pullman. That has to be the most remote location on the west coast. June turned away from Seattle, Spokane, and the rest of America - and went global. Sorry it didn't work out better for her.

I looked up Varna, thinking Pullman might seem like a metropolis to a recruit from Bulgaria - but no, Varna is a bustling seaport and major resort city on the Black Sea. I'd love to hear the story behind each of their foreign recruits and I'm looking forward to watching Bobbi shoot.  But as usual, Tara's defense will key on her and she'll have a tough night in Maples.


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