The Albany Times Union continues to celebrate the Great Danes: How UAlbany built a women’s basketball dynasty
Coach Katie Abrahamson-Henderson was the last person up the ladder after UAlbany defeated Maine 59-58 in the championship game. She cut the rest of the net off the hoop and then swung it over her head, motioning for the fans to cheer louder.
She’s the architect of a program that this week will play in the NCAA Tournament for the fifth straight year, an achievement that was all but impossible to imagine when she was hired on April 19, 2010.
Coach Abe, as she’s known, arrived with a surprisingly simple blueprint: Build strong women, she often says, and you can build a winning basketball team.
But the culture change she brought and winning basketball that followed were hardly so simple. There were doubts to overcome off the court and challenges on the court.
This is how UAlbany became a women’s basketball powerhouse.
Video: These are two SNY specials on UConn. I post them not to celebrate the Husky program, but to remind coaches and athletic directors that building a quality program takes time, thought and attention. You don’t always get to got to the Big Dance (ask Maine)… or the WNIT… or garner a winning season. But there are steps you can take…
The Syracuse women’s basketball team greeted a small woman in a light-brown knitted hat and a blue SU basketball shirt standing behind the bench after a game in the Carrier Dome on Dec. 6. Each player shook her hand as she supported herself with a black cane in her left hand. They all uttered just two words: “Thank you.”
The woman was Muriel Smith, Syracuse’s first women’s basketball and field hockey head coach, who died on March 1. She was 87. Smith led the women’s basketball team to a 57-33 record from 1971-1978 and the field hockey team to a 22-16-7 record from 1972-1977. She was a gold medalist in the National Senior Games — a fierce competitor, yet still kind and gracious. She was a coach, teacher and trailblazer for women’s sports.
About the post-season: BYU men’s and women’s basketball prepare for postseason invites
More about the post-season: What a time to be alive in Middle Tennessee
There are no teams in America right now that believe in themselves more than the Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee State University.
And that belief has worked wonders.
Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams, all but counted out ahead of the Conference USA Championship, proved critics wrong Saturday night in Birmingham securing a rare sweep of the conference tournament.
The men, who were battling through injuries late in the season, fought their way past skeptics and with a pair of Reggie Upshaw free throws as the Blue Raiders took their first C-USA tournament crown in school history.
Though the women closed out the season on a three-game win streak, they were also counted out by pundits when it came to bringing home a championship.
About finding out who goes where: NCAA Women’s Basketball Bracket 2016: Selection Show TV, Live Stream Schedule
About comparing the Committee’s picks v. Charlie’s picks on Dishin & Swishin 3/10/16 Podcast: Bracketologist Charlie Creme goes beyond 140-characters and
About moving from one team to another: Pac-12 Announces New Policy Dealing with Misconduct Issues of Transfer Student-Athletes
Under the new policy, student-athlete transfers who are ineligible to re-enroll at any of their previous colleges or universities will be automatically deemed ineligible to receive athletic aid from a Pac-12 university and cannot join any university team or participate in their activities.
The transfer policy will apply only to student misconduct issues such as assault, harassment, academic fraud, and other violations of campus behavior conduct policies. It will not apply to academic performance reasons unrelated to misconduct.
About the DIII Road to Indy, you should always check out D3Hoops:
Forward Melissa Baptista poured in a game high 23 points to lead the way, as Tufts held off a comeback attempt by the University of Scranton in the fourth quarter to collect a hard fought 57-48 victory in the Quarterfinals of the 2016 NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball Tournament on Saturday in the John Long Center.
With the victory, the Jumbos (now 27-3 on the year) advance to their third consecutive Final Four, which will be played next Saturday in Columbus, Ohio on the campus of Capital University. Scranton ends the season with a 30-1 record with the defeat.”It was a really fun game for me to be a part of and coach,” said Tufts head coach Carla Berube after the win. “Scranton brought it. When they tied the game up in the second half, I knew our team was going to have to dig deep and find ways to get stops and keep composed, and we were able to do that.”
Make it 31-0.
In its most closely contested game since December, the Thomas More women’s basketball team kept its unbeaten season alive and advanced to the NCAA Division III Final Four with an 88-72 victory over visiting Washington (Mo.) on Saturday.
The Saints’ average margin of victory this season is 39.3 points, but they led by just six going to the fourth quarter Saturday.
For the first time in three years, the Amherst College women’s basketball team is back in the NCAA Division III Final Four.
Amherst earned a trip to Columbus, Ohio, Saturday following a 78-50 triumph over Rochester in an Elite Eight game at LeFrak Gymnasium.
Amherst outscored Rochester 26-10 in the third quarter to pull away.
“What an outstanding pace – I’m tired and I didn’t even play,” Amherst coach G.P. Gromacki said. “I am proud of them.”
Division II is in the Sweet Sixteen stage.
About prepping for the W’s “Year 20.”
And, just in case you missed this, Amber Brown returns to Norfolk State:
Six weeks ago, it looked as if Norfolk State forward Amber Brown might die after suffering a diabetes-related stroke and three cardiac arrests.
On Saturday, the 20-year-old from Atlanta sat courtside at Echols Hall watching her Spartan teammates rally from 14 back only to fall four points shy against Morgan State. She snapped pictures with her iPhone, texted at a furious pace, ate a hot dog from the concession stand, giggled with her best friend and accepted handshakes, hugs and even flowers from fans who repeatedly told her how much they prayed for her during the 40-day ordeal when she was hospitalized.