Press conference: Shauna Green and Dayton players react to NCAA loss
Junior forward Maddy Dennis, sophomore guard Brittany Ward and junior guard Tiaera Phillips should play bigger roles next season.
The team also adds two transfers who sat out this season: redshirt sophomore forward Julia Chandler (Syracuse) and redshirt sophomore guard Araion Bradshaw (South Carolina).
“The thing I like about them is they have a demeanor about them,” Green said. “They’re used to winning. They’re used to competing for championships. That’s really important. They have that killer instinct about them that I love.”
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Three freshmen join the program as well: Kyla Whitehead, a 6-foot-2 forward from Pickerington Central, which advanced to the Division I state championship game with a win Friday against Mason; Ella Skeens, a 5-11 forward from Chillicothe Southeastern who scored 2,283 points in her career; and Amari Davidson, a 6-2 forward from Avon High School.
“We’re going to need them,” Green said of the freshmen. “They’re going to have to come in and get some minutes.”
The Flyers will also benefit from having a healthy Shakeela Fowler. The junior guard missed the season with a torn ACL. She’s has not yet been cleared for full-contact practices but is ahead of schedule in her recovery, Green said. Sophomore guard Jenna Giacone is another player who didn’t play this year after suffering a foot injury last summer.
All the additions and returns will give Green a deeper bench than she had this year. The Flyers had an eight-player rotation, and often some starters played all 40 minutes in games. That may have played a part in Dayton’s performance Friday.
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Green thought her players were worn down at the end of the season.
“The last couple games, I don’t know if it’s fatigue or what,” Green said, “but we just didn’t have that spark to us that you saw for 17 games.”
The lack of a backup point guard hurt, too, because Cannatelli had to play out of position when the starting point guard, Burdette, picked up her second foul in the first quarter.
“I think you saw that our depth today was just a major, major factor,” Green said.