The Travis Brewster coaching era is off and running for the UND women’s basketball team after a pair of exhibitions against Bemidji State and Mayville State. Here are a few initial observations as the team prepares for the regular-season opener against Harvard on Sunday:
- UND still hasn’t played with starting center Allyssa Wall, who has been sidelined with an injury. Brewster said Wall, who scored more than 10 points per game last season, is game-time decision against Harvard. Against Mayville, post Katie Houdek also didn’t play, but Brewster said that was precautionary and Houdek will play against Harvard.
- The preseason storyline for UND was how it was going to replace Charnise and Charnay Mothershed, the junior college transfer twins who have done a majority of the ball-handling the past two seasons. They were also strong perimeter defenders. The results have been expectedly mixed. UND turned the ball over 23 times against the Beavers and 20 times against Mayville, which are much-too-high totals coming against softer opponents. But the promising aspect to the 20 turnovers against Mayville is that Nicole Smart and Brianna Williams each went turnoverless. Smart and Williams expect to be the primary ball-handlers this season.
- After missing its first eight shots against Mayville, UND finished the game strong. The team’s interior passing is a strength. Forwards/centers Emily Evers, Madi Buck and Megan Lauck see the court well. Lauck, who started against Mayville, could be a key piece to the success of UND in 2012-13 if she can find consistency. She has nice touch around the basket, but she also committed four turnovers against Mayville.
- UND will have decisions to make as far as redshirting freshmen. UND has four freshmen — Mia Loyd, Josie Dillon, Katie Klapprodt and Ellen Kiser. Brewster said he has to do some thinking on redshirts still. The most likely candidate would be Loyd, who is undersized but a hard-worker who had eight points and six boards in 15 minutes against the Comets.