This season's Duke Women's Basketball team will be one of the least experienced groups Coach McCallie has had at Duke. Despite that youth, the Sporting News have the Blue Devils ranked sixth nationally, and all other preview publications have Duke firmly in the nation's top ten. Those expectations come from having a very talented roster and the fact that many of their freshman gained valuable experience on the court in their first year. BDN caught up to two rising sophomores, Tricia Liston [6-1 G-F] and Haley Peters [6-3 G-F] and we got their thoughts on the team and what they worked on over the summer. And, for the record, both looked improved on the court during the North Carolina Pro Am.
Hi girls! Tell me what you worked on this summer?
Tricia Liston - I worked on conditioning, footwork and agility work as well as keeping up with my fundamentals, especially ball handling. I tried to work on that a little extra.
Haley Peters - I spent a lot of time working on my ball handling, moving on the court, shooting threes and creating off the dribble.
Did Coach P tell either of you to work on any particular thing in the off season?
Tricia - Coach wanted me to work on my overall game, my shot, and defense, too. She wants me to be a little more confident in my defense. That's about it.
Haley - She wanted me to spend some of the summer playing the two and the one in order to get more comfortable having the ball in my hands out on the floor. As a whole, the big thing we wanted to work on as a team were our free throws because they weren't very good last year and, to get to where we want to get to, you have to be a good free throw shooter.
So, what do you two think about this season's team? The roster is an interesting mix of talent, yet you lost some key contributors from a year ago.
Tricia - I'm excited. We have a new team this year, different from last year's, and we have the same capabilities, maybe even more, and think that the way we all play together will be interesting to see throughout the season.
Haley - I'm excited about the coming season. We're young but we're really talented, and I think seniors Shay Selby and Kathleen Scheer have a great perspective in what they bring and can be leaders for our team. We've had a good summer so far and we're talented, so, if we all work together, we can have a great season.
Both of you are going into your sophomore year at Duke having your freshman campaign behind you. How big is it to just have a year's experience under your belt?
Tricia -I think it's huge, just even in the summer I feel way more confident abut my game and our team. Just playing at the college level, it's such a wake up call your first season in that it's so much more different than high school in that everybody can play.
Haley - As a freshman class we experienced a lot last season, being in different situations, and got to play a lot more than most freshmen in the country. So we all have more experience and I feel much more confident that what I learned will help me step up to be a leader.
Notes - Here is the new schedule for the Duke Women's Basketball Team. BDN is looking for someone to help cover women's hoops in a non paying apprentice position for the coming season. Ideal candidates would be able to make it to all and or majority of the home games and local road ones as well. You must be professional and have a good knowledge of the program and be in close proximity to Duke University. If interested and or want more details, contact me at Watzone@BlueDevilNation.net