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Amherst Women's Basketball - Shannon Russell

Interviews Homepage

Amherst Women's Basketball

Interview conducted by Shawn Siegel

June 12th, 2003

Discussion with Amherst's Shannon Russell



Last season, Shannon Russell led Amherst with 16 points per game, and was named Second-Team All NESCAC.  Next season, Shannon has a chance to become the schools all-time leading scorer.  She was kind enough to answer a few of our questions:
   
   1)  You guys started 9-0 last season before ending 12-12.  What do you think accounted for the hot start and then the tail-off.  Is the talent in the conference that much stronger?

 

No, I think that we just dealt with a lot of adversity towards the middle of the season. We got off track and unfortunately, we never recovered.
   
   2) Last season, you were solid statistically across the board.  You led the team in scoring, were 2nd in both steals and blocks, and finished 3rd on the team in assists.  With this in mind, is there any one specific area of your game that youíd like to improve on for next season?

 

Taking the ball to the hoop. I would definitely like to get to the foul line more consistently and I know I'm not going to draw fouls standing at the three point line.
   
   
   3)  Last season, you attempted 195 thee-pointers.   Simply getting off eight per game is quite a challenge in itself.  How hard do you have to work to get open enough to shoot so many shots from downtown, not to mention hitting at a 33% clip?

 

When my teammates set good screens it is pretty easy to get the shots off. Having the green light to shoot also helps, I donít have to hesitate, I can just shoot when Iím open.
   
   
   4)  Your team will lose 3 seniors, two of whom were major contributors, but should still return enough experience to be successful.  Do you think the team will be primed to improve on last seasonís .500 record? (12-12)

 

Yes. We have a talented group of freshman coming in, a group of rising sophomores with a year of experience under their belt, and 5 veterans all looking to contribute.   Of course the competition will still be a challenge, but I think after last yearís disappointments, everyone is going to be a little bit hungrier for the wins.
   
   5)  Your male counterparts made a nice run to last seasonís DIII Elite Eight.  Does it give you any extra impetus to succeed after seeing their run?  Do you guys get along well with the menís team?  

 

Yes we get along pretty well with the menís team.   Unfortunately our schedules overlap, but we look to support them whenever we can. I hope to think seeing any of our sports teams make an NCAA run would give us a little more drive, but it all starts with us.

   

   6)  Do you consider yourself the team leader?  If not, who else picks up this role?

 

I donít really consider myself ďtheĒ team leader. We have four senior captains returning next year, so I think itíd be hard to single any one person out.   I think the mentality is that we are all leaders and odds are that at least one leader will be on the floor at all times, something that I think was missing from last years team.
   
   
   7)  What do you feel has been the most satisfying aspect of playing college basketball so far?

My teammates. I have been lucky enough to play with an awesome group of girls. They are smart, they work hard, and are fun to be around.  

 

 

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