Playing the offseason game

Posted on 16 April 2014 by admin

STLCC Lady Archers’ basketball team signs six new players in one week

Khalia Miller shakes Ethridge’s hand after signing STLCC papers on April 9. | PHOTO: SPENCER GLEASON

Khalia Miller shakes Ethridge’s hand after signing STLCC papers on April 9. | PHOTO: SPENCER GLEASON

By: SPENCER GLEASON
Editor in Chief

The Lady Archers basketball team has already turned the clock on their 2013-14 season and has jump-started the offseason with a spring in their step, signing six new players in one week.

Khalia Miller (North Technical High School), Lindsey Bozdeck (Lindbergh High School), Lorielle Little (Ashford University), Amanda Hughes (Marshalltown High School), Sierra McClure (Northwest High School) and Abbey Holtkamp (Centralia) signed letters of intent to play college basketball while donning the navy blue and silver.

“I’m in skies. I’m so excited,” Miller said. “I’m just ready to play and get on the court. And get used to the school and used to the classes. I’m just ready to go. I’m that excited.”

Miller, a 5-foot-6-inch shooting guard, led her North Tech Eagles to their first final four during the 2012-13 season. She put up 18 points in the quarterfinal win over Palmyra that season, then topped that with a game-high 27 points in the sectional win over Hermann.

“I see myself as a leader,” Miller said. “I always want to come off as a leader. At North Tech, I came in and I was their leader automatically. I want to come into Meramec and be a leader automatically, too.”

Miller and the new signees will join an Archers’ roster that will see all four of their sophomores from the 2013-14 season graduate this spring.

“It’s always good to have competition because it gives them something to play for,” Head Coach Shelly Ethridge said. “It gives them motivation to work. That’s what sports is all about — the competition. You have to have it to be successful.”

That competition is one tool that Ethridge uses to help bring her team closer together to form team chemistry.

“It’s funny because during our open gyms, you can visibly see that we’re starting to come together again,” Ethridge said. “With so many new comers this past season, it was difficult to figure out each other and pull it all together, as far as figuring out what people can and can’t do. I think with having a year under our belt, with the returners, it’s certainly going to be helpful for us.”

Although Miller has yet to play her first college game, she can already feel what she calls a “family bond” with the Lady Archers. It was that family atmosphere that helped bring her to STLCC.

“It’s like a family bond. Automatically, they made me feel welcome. They’ve kept in touch. They made sure that I knew they were interested,” Miller said. “I went to different colleges and talked to different coaches, but I didn’t get that connection with anybody else. I have to have a connection with my coach and my team.”

According to Ethridge, the connection she has with her players exceeds past the court and in the classroom.

“Doing well in the classroom is the most important thing,” Ethridge said. “Our kids will tell you, if they are not doing what needs to be doing in the classroom, they will not be on the basketball court playing.”

Bozdeck, an incoming freshman forward, was on her way to play for the Lady Griffins at Fontbonne University, but the A-plus program helped lure her to STLCC.

“I was about to sign with [Fontbonne],” Bozdeck said. “But this was a better deal. It’s free because I did the A-plus program.”

Although practices for the 2014-15 season do not officially start for another four months, Miller cannot wait to be out on the court for her new team.

“I’m ready,” Miller said. “I’m ready for school and basketball.”

 

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