The IPFW women’s basketball team has its highest expectations of any season since they joined Division I in 2001, as they opened their practice season. The team returns all five starters from a season ago, two other strong returners, a key transfer, and a group of quality freshman for the upcoming season.
“Expectations are high, but not unrealistic,” said IPFW head women’s basketball coach Chris Paul, now in his eighth season on the bench, the fourth as head coach. “I don’t know what the number of wins is, and we don’t even talk about it. All we’re going to do is try and get better everyday, and prove to people that we are getting better every year as a program.”
IPFW capped their season last year by winning six of their last eight games, catapulting themselves into the fifth seed of the conference tournament, after opening the year with a 2-17 record.
The Mastodons return their five primary starters, and the two other returns also started during the season a year ago. Heading up the returnees is the team’s leading scorer, and Second Team All-Summit League selection Chelsey Jackson, who averaged 13.3 points per game, while also dishing out 59 assists. Jordan Zuppe also finished the year averaging double figure points, putting up 10.3 points per game, while Eva Ivanova averaged 8.5 points, blocked a team-best 36 shots, and pulled down 122 rebounds.
Senior point guard Courtney Reed also returns, after leading the team with 61 assists against just 33 turnovers in 30 games, while Sarah Haluska led the team with 128 rebounds, after starting 24 of the 29 games she played in last season. Sophomore Anne Boese and senior Laura Gerhardt also return after starting at different points during the season.
Sophomore transfer Stephanie Rosado is eligible to play after sitting out last season due to the NCAA Transfer Residency requirements. Headlining the group of freshman is post Sydney Weinert, a Fort Wayne South Side graduate, who played in the annual Indiana/Kentucky All-Star series. Also new to the squad and helping add depth in the front court is 6-2 Sarah Hammond and 6-4 Hannah Jones. Bringing speed and depth to the backcourt is high-scoring freshman Kim Kline, who finished her career as Nelsonville-York’s all-time leading scorer.
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