Westminster College’s women’s basketball team is to compete in the conference championship tournament for the first time since receiving National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) Division II status this past summer.
“We are excited for the chance to keep playing with this group and see how long we can extend games and the season,” said Shelley Jarrard, head coach of the women’s basketball team.
Despite team efforts and wins in past seasons, the women’s basketball team has been unable to compete in NCAA II postseason competition during their three-year transition, Jarrard said.
The Griffins will host a first-round Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) tournament game on Tuesday, Mar. 5.
“I have such a competitive nature that all I really wanted to do is win, even if that meant we were not able to go on [to postseason competition],” said Denise Gonzalez, a member of the women’s basketball team. “All we really could do is get better as a team and gain experience from the conference.”
This year, things are different for the Griffins. The team has had another good season and has the ability to play in the postseason for the first time.
“We have a couple more scorers than last season, more depth,” Jarrard said. “Also, [we have] competitiveness and great senior leadership.”
The team’s good mentality, energy and focus will help them move through the rest of the season, Jarrard said.
“Our team gets along so well outside of the court,” women’s basketball player Hunter Krebs said. “I think our strong relationships on and off the court have helped us play so well together.”
The Griffins have a strong record finishing their regular season in second in the standings with a 17-5 RMAC record and a 19-7 overall record after competing against the Dixie State Trailblazers on Mar. 1.
“We prepared so hard before our season and it has been so rewarding to see us become a top Division II team in the country,” Gonzalez said.