The USD women's basketball team was one win away from the NCAA tournament last season. The Coyotes fell by three to rival SDSU in the Summit League Championship. With one year under her belt, head coach Amy Williams is hoping her team can improve on the stellar finish. She'll have plenty of help from key returning starters.
Leading the way will be last year's Summit League Tournament Most Valuable Player Nicole Seekamp. She averaged just under 15 points per game last season. In her time off, Seekamp says she focused on being more consistent.
"Just finishing with contact around the basket. In the summer, I think I got a lot stronger. I worked on my ball handles. Just with the end of my season last year, I was starting to play well. I think that just gave me confidence. Obviously I can't judge that yet but after a few games, I'll be able to see how well I've done in the offseason," Seekamp said.
Williams has had time to catch her breath after an exciting first year at the helm. She says alongside Seekamp, the team's post players will be the strength. Polly Harrington is back. She averaged 11 points and 6 rebounds a year ago.
"I think that we've got some good size, some good scoring ability, some good versatility and we're bringing in some depth with some of our new freshmen in that position, so I think that will be a strength," Williams said.
Williams expects to improve on a 10-6 league record with players more comfortable in her system. However, she knows when it counts to be firing on all cylinders and so does one of her top players.
"If we can be playing our best basketball and we finish the conference strong and go into that Summit Tournament playing pretty well. I think that's our main goal is to get to that Summit Tournament, be playing our best basketball and hopefully go to the NCAA Tournament," Seekamp said.
Seekamp and company head to California next weekend to kickoff the new season against Cal-State Fullerton on Nov. 8.