SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It’s been a long time since the Augustana women’s basketball team has seen a change in head coach. But following Dave Krauth’s retirement, the university began a hunt for their new leader.
Augustana introduced their new women’s basketball coach on Thursday. Jillian Flores Bennett comes to Sioux Falls following one year at Iowa Western where she led them to a 26-5 record.
“I wanted them to know that I’m coming in, and I want to get to know them as people. I want them to get to know me, and that will lead to winning games. But I also told them there’ll be some things they have to adjust to my way of doing things, my standards, the energy I expected them to bring every day. But I think they’re looking forward to it,” Augustana head coach Jillian Flores Bennett said.
“Personally, I love her energy and how passionate and excited you can tell that she is about the game and just, you can really see that she’s going to care for all of her players and wants us to be as best as we can be,” Augustana forward Jennifer Aadland said.
The Council Bluffs, Iowa native will have big shoes to fill, joining a program that has seen 34 straight winning seasons.
“Really, it’s everything. It’s the history of the basketball program and the athletic department as a whole. And then just the leadership of President Stephanie Herseth Sandlin and athletic director Josh Morton, just really believe in what they’re doing here and I’m thankful that they believe in me too,” Augustana head coach, Jillian Flores Bennett said.
Beginning her third year of her coaching career, Flores Bennett finds this new start to be both inspiring and empowering.
“It’s a beautiful time to be a woman in sports. It’s a beautiful time to get opportunities that we deserve. And I’m excited to put my spin on things here. And like I said, really just take something good and make it great,” coach Bennett said.
Flores Bennett’s first head coaching job was at Our Lady of the Lake in San Antonio.