Thursday, October 8, 2015

College, International scene busy season

The Lady Vols have a reconstructed roster and high expectations.

New Kansas coach Brandon Schneider has started the team on boot camp. The Jayhawks are embracing change.

Michigan State has depth and health as the season begins.

UNCW is pushing for a winning season.

A mix of returners and fresh faces will lead Long Beach State. An early look.

Coach Linda Lappe says the Buffs are ready to return to the "Colorado way."

Missouri State's Kenzie Williams balances student teaching and basketball.

Well-traveled freshman guard Yassemeen “Yazzy” Sa’Dullah has embraced West Virginia.

USA National Team:

Team USA crushed Dike Naples today, 86-50.

International news:

Lauren Jackson will return to the WNBL within a month.

Women making progress:

Nancy Lieberman and Becky Hammon - assistant coaches of the Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs, respectively - will be on the sidelines tomorrow during the two team's preseason game.

Finals story lines

Game 3 tomorrow, 5 p.m. Pacific/8 p.m. Eastern on ESPN2.

Both teams have been prepping for the game.

The WNBA has told Fever coach Stephanie White to "keep quiet" about officiating.

Indiana is ready to play in front of hometown fans again. They are carrying bottled-up frustration into game 3.

Fever forward Lynetta Kizer leads the team's pre-game singing ritual.

Indiana is everything that's good.

Thousands lined up yesterday to get Fever tickets.

Minnesota's smaller line up in game 2 gave Indiana guards fits.

The Lynx are prepping for another physical battle.

Lynx forward Devereaux Peters is expecting friends and family from South Bend in the crowd.

Finals viewership:

Game one was the most-watched game one on ABC since 1998.

All-WNBA teams announced

All-WNBA teams:


Player Team Position Points

Elena Delle Donne Chicago Sky Forward 195
Maya Moore Minnesota Lynx Forward 188
Tina Charles New York Liberty Center 167
DeWanna Bonner Phoenix Mercury Guard 131
Angel McCoughtry Atlanta Dream Guard 102


Player Team Position Points

Candace Parker Los Angeles Sparks Forward 106
Tamika Catchings Indiana Fever Forward 63
Brittney Griner Phoenix Mercury Center 147
Epiphanny Prince New York Liberty Guard 96
Courtney Vandersloot Chicago Sky Guard 73

Fan editorial: game 2 officiating suspect

by Vernon Chandler

As an avid WNBA fan I tuned in to the game Tuesday night to view the most highly-skilled women in the world play the game they love on the biggest stage.

Being an Atlanta Dream fan, I can honestly say I have no dog in the fight. It was truly a joy watching Maya Moore, Seimone Augustus and Big Syl compete against Catch, Briann January and the tough defensive-minded Indiana Fever. I must admit being a Hoosier, I have sentimental feelings watching Tamika Catchings go for the gusto one last time.

With all this being said, I was very disappointed at the blatant unevenness in the way the game was officiated. I am no one’s conspiracy theorist, but Mr. Magoo could see the discrepancy in the calls being made. Briann January was getting mugged throughout the game and the refs swallowed their whistles.

Talking to other WNBA fans on Twitter, I discovered I wasn’t alone in my feelings. It’s a commonly-held sentiment that Minnesota is allowed to play more physical than most other teams in the WNBA. I take my hat off to Fever coach Stephanie White for not toeing the company line and calling out the refs for the grievous way one of the all-time greats was treated in a championship series.

Here’s hoping game 3 is more evenly-called and they allow the players to play with emotion seeing this series will determine the champion of the WNBA. So if Shenise Johnson slaps the scoring table after being on the business end of a vicious pick, please let her, without calling a technical foul. These women and the WNBA fans deserve to see a great game without any bias.

Vernon Chandler is an Atlanta resident and an Atlanta Dream fan.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The day after......and International and college happenings

WNBA finals:

The Fever is ready to crank it up against the Lynx.


Shenise Johnson continues to surprise for the Fever.

Indiana will honor retired stars Tammy Sutton-Brown and Katie Douglas during game 3.

USA National Team:

The USA battled past host Italy, 79-66. Five players scored in double figures: Angel McCoughtry, Candace Parker, Brittney Griner, Candice Dupree and Elena Delle Donne.

International basketball:

A to Z of Afrobasket women.

College news:

USF coach Jose Fernandez and his wife have endowed a women's basketball scholarship.

Replacing Amanda Zahui B. is a tall task for Minnesota newcomers.

Wichita State has begun practice with an inexperienced roster.

Louisiana is expecting great things.

New Mexico is adjusting to life without Antiesha Brown.

Post-game press conferences from game 2


Q. It took Maya 13 minutes to get a basket and the five points at halftime. How much of a concern was that and how much did you need to do to get her going?

COACH REEVE: It was a big concern. She was just awful early, just awful. Shot selection, the way she was playing. It was a case where I think our team was so amped up to play, Maya being probably the one that was the most amped up, and she just had to settle down, settle down. It wasn’t for lack of wanting to do the right thing, but it was just not good.

So I thought she was going to let the game come to her. I thought Syl opened things up for us. Frankly I thought when our defense turned it up a notch, we were able to play with some flow and get some easy shots. Maya was flying around, getting some transition baskets and she just really got going from there.

Q. You talked about going small and that kind of changed the dynamic. Do you think the insertion of Renee Montgomery assisted their perimeter defense and made things more difficult for you?

COACH WHITE: I think Montgomery and Cruz both. Anna Cruz reminds me of Debbie Black for all the people that were covering the league back then. She’s just like a little gnat that’s all over you. It’s exhausting and it’s irritating, and you just want to slap her away.

I mean that with the utmost respect because Debbie Black is one of the all‑time greats that played in this league because of that. So to have Cruz, somebody who just hounds you and hounds you and she never gets tired, and then Montgomery as well, certainly it absolutely makes a difference.

Q. The series now reverts over to Indiana. What can we see out of you guys on Friday?

MAYA MOORE: First two games, so it’s set up to be a very entertaining Game 3. It will be a dog fight just like it has been these first two games. It’s set up to be a very entertaining Game 3 with both teams very hungry. I think after the horn blew both teams were still wanting to go. We’re ready to go for Game 3.

Q. The intensity, you were very animated throughout the game. How much did that intensity help you guys on the defensive end, especially in the second half?

MAYA MOORE: It’s huge. We’re connected. We’re invested. Everyone’s focused, communicating, people coming in off the bench doing the same thing, increasing the level of energy even. Playing hard and sticking together and end up making our own breaks. You see that emotion from us. Yeah, you probably have some pretty entertaining pictures from tonight because we were pretty animated.

Q. The series is going to revert back to Indiana on Friday. What can we expect to see with you playing in front of your home crowd?

TAMIKA CATCHINGS: The best fans in the WNBA are going to be in the house.

BRIANN JANUARY: That’s right.

TAMIKA CATCHINGS: And we’re going to come and we’re going to be ready. I told our team and we told our team, we are going to bottle up every sense of frustration, every sense of anger, every sense of knowing what we didn’t do and what we didn’t accomplish tonight, put that in a bottle and let it explode when we get back home.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

More college seasons sprouts

Purdue is energized for the season.

It's the same basketball, but a new story at Cal.

Florida is focused on improving their toughness this season.

Montana is thinking reload, not rebuild.

There's a "new feeling in the air" at Colorado.

Clay Crothers has been promoted to assistant coach at Lipscomb.

Competitive Katrina Pardee is ready for a challenge at West Virginia.

International news:

Lauran Jackson is confident of playing soon for the Canberra Capitals.

Spaniard Jose Maria Buceta has been named head coach of Britain's women's basketball team.

USA National Team:

Candice Dupree hopes to elevate her profile during the team's current European tour.

Lynx take game 2 and even the series

The Lynx downed the Fever, 77-71, to even the series. The tenacious Lynx needed Maya Moore's finishing touch.

The game was so physical that I feel like I need an ice bath just from watching. And it was tense due to officiating:

"This game was a bloodbath," White said. "I've never seen a player, of Tamika Catchings' caliber get so disrespected in my life. Never. And to me that's a travesty. That's a travesty."

Reeve spent the day between Games 1 and 2 publicly chiding the officials for allowing Indiana's defenders to get so physical with guard Lindsay Whalen. She wouldn't comment on if she received a fine for her remarks, but the rookie coach White said Reeve the veteran showed her how to control the narrative.

Tamika Catchings post-game interview.

Maya Moore post-game interview.

Box score.

Three techs on Indiana.

Game 3 in Indianapolis Friday will be very interesting, to say the least.

Season in review:

A conversation with WNBA president Laurel Richie.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Division I schools begin practice this week (!!)

Among the schools with first practices in the books yesterday, or today:

Ole Miss

Georgia Tech

Western Carolina

St. Bonaventure





North Dakota State


Washington State

Boston University

North Carolina-Greensboro

Saint Louis

Illinois State

Southern Miss

Central Michigan


Long Beach State


Bowling Green


Air Force

Southeast Missouri




Indiana State

George Washington







Saint Mary's

Green Bay

Northern Illinois

Story lines:

Nebraska's Rachel Theriot and Jessica Shepard are coming back from injuries together.

New Mexico State is looking to build on last season.

Getting ready for game 2 tomorrow

Game 2 on tap tomorrow, 5 p.m. Pacific/8 p.m. Eastern on ESPN2.

The match up:

Rebekkah Brunson and the Lynx look to rebound in game 2.

All coaches Stephanie White and Cheryl Reeve have in common is mutual respect.

Fever story lines:

Indiana has claimed their lockdown defense in the postseason.

The Fever had an all-access practice today in Minnesota.

Briann January, Shavonte Zellous and Marissa Coleman share a bond that dates back to 2009.

Shenise Johnson has made an immediate impact for Indiana.

Maya Moore talks about Tamika Catchings.

Lynx story lines:

Coach Cheryl Reeve called out her stars after yesterday's loss.

Lindsay Whalen aims to make a bigger impact in game 2. The Lynx need her back on track.

Whalen doesn't get the calls she used to, Reeve says.

Whalen and Seimone Augustus need to get going for Minnesota. Because the Lynx need them.