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This season's edition of the Hollins basketball team features new leaders and new faces but remains singularly focused on one goal: moving up the conference standings. After playing its first ODAC tournament game in a decade last season, Hollins looks to its returning core and talented newcomers in order to record a top-eight finish and secure a home game in the end-of-season 2014 ODAC Women’s Basketball Championships.
Hollins enters a new era with the graduation of one of the conference's best backcourts. Jasmine Greene '13 and Lacie Forrest '13 are no longer running the show for a Hollins team that is leaning heavily on its returning players. Greene, a first team All-ODAC selection and the school’s all-time leading scorer, will be hard to replace. Hollins will count on its strength inside to lessen the blow of losing the talented duo.
Chanci Wright '14 takes over the role of captain and team leader. The six-foot post player earned solid numbers a season ago, averaging 7.8 points and 9.4 rebounds per contest. Wright was second in the league in rebounding last season and the team will need her to continue to limit possessions again this season. Brandi Chesne '14 and Carrie Cox '14 will be asked to step up their production on the court and help provide the leadership that the young group will need in order to reach their goals.
Britney Campbell '15 seeks to improve on her five points-per-game average, fourth on the team, from last season. The talented and athletic swing player will be asked to take over the main role of attacking the basket that she has shown such great flashes of during her first two campaigns. Guard Racheal Crowder '15, who came on late last year, will need to pick up where she left off in providing Hollins a secondary ball handler and solid outside shooter.
At 6'2", Ella Oakley '16 provides even more interior support in her second season. After gaining precious experience last season, Oakley solidifies an inside game that could be one of the ODAC’s best. Auburn Smith '16 was on pace last year to put up impressive scoring numbers before her season was cut short. She is the third leading returning scorer and looks to be a consistent producer on the offensive end of the floor. After gaining experience last season, Kayla Pommier '16 returns to give Hollins four six-footers on the interior.
Morgan Hufford '17 comes in as a highly recruited ball handler. The guard, from nearby Fincastle, will be relied upon to take care of the ball and get Hollins into their half court offensive sets. Another local product, Jewell Parfitt '17 of Roanoke, provides Hollins with a young backcourt that is poised to take over from the Greene/Forrest duo of the past four years. Taylor Catron '17 is an excellent shooter who has the size to play both shooting guard and small forward. Erin Staunton '17 and Cailey Wright '17 make this group of five guards one of the best young groups in the ODAC. Amber Markovitz '17 gives Hollins the versatility of playing with a smaller group of ball handlers and scorers by playing the power forward slot, or giving the team a bigger, better rebounding lineup when she plays at small forward. Another forward, Kaitlyn Taylor will help to provide championship pedigree after being part of a State Championship team in 2010. Another forward, Kaitlyn Taylor '17 will help to provide championship pedigree after being part of a state championship team in 2010. The final piece to the Hollins puzzle is a young, athletic post player with incredible upside, Felicity Mampe '17.
The young, deep, and talented Hollins squad travels to Dickenson College for a tip-off tournament in mid-November to open the season. The first of Hollins' 14 home games takes place against Mary Baldwin College on November 19.
Following a successful 2011-12 basketball campaign, Hollins entered this season with optimism and promise. After finishing in a tie for seventh last year in the 12-team Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC), Hollins was selected in the ODAC pre-season coaches poll to repeat in seventh place, the highest any Hollins hoops squad has been selected in the poll in recent history.
Hollins got off to a slow start this year by dropping five of their first six games, including an 0-3 start against conference foes. However, a thrilling overtime win over Salisbury heading into the holiday break seemed to turn the season around. Hollins won five games in January, and back-to-back wins late in the season put the team in the middle of the ODAC standings heading into the final week of conference play. A showdown with Roanoke College was all that stood between Hollins and hosting a home game in the opening round of the ODAC tournament. Hollins led throughout the contest and with just 16 seconds left to play, found themselves with a chance to finish off the Maroons. However, disaster struck as Roanoke pulled off a miraculous comeback victory and sent Hollins on the road for the tournament opener.
Hollins played a spirited game at Shenandoah but fell to the Hornets in the ODAC tournament’s first round.
Although not the season that they had envisioned, Hollins completed a successful 2012-13 season with a 9-16 mark, just one win short of last year’s record-tying ten victories. Hollins will have to replace a trio of seniors but have a strong nucleus returning for the 2013-14 season.
Jasmine Greene '13, Hampton, VA: Greene wrapped up her record-setting career with her best season to date. She led the ODAC in scoring (19.2) and assists (4.2) while finishing second in steals, eighth in free throw percentage and tenth in shooting percentage. For her efforts, she was named All-ODAC First Team this year after earning Second Team honors the past two seasons. Greene was chosen as the ODAC Women’s Basketball Player of the Week three times this season, a Hollins record. She will leave Hollins as the all-time leader in points (1,760), assists (393), and steals (270).
Lacie Forrest '13, Richmond, VA: Forrest's senior campaign started slowly, but she finished with a bang, ranked 14th in the ODAC with 10.5 points per game. She was second on the team in scoring, assists, and steals, and third in rebounding. Following her 14-point, 15-rebound effort in a 12-point win over Randolph, Forrest was named Hollins Student-Athlete of the Week (SAOW) for the second time this year.
Chanci Wright '14, Eden, TX: After wrapping up the 2011-12 season with three double-doubles, Wright posted a strong 2012-13 season in the post for Hollins. She led the team in rebounding and shooting percentage and was the third-leading scorer. Her 9.4 rebounds per game ranked second in the ODAC and her 4.1 offensive rebounds per game was tops in the conference. Wright led the ODAC in shooting percentage for a majority of the season and ultimately finished fourth, hitting 48.7% of her shots. She was named SAOW after setting a Hollins single-game record by making all nine of her shots against Meredith College.