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ISSUE 120 VOL 11 PUBLISHED 2/14/2007

End draws near for women

By Monica Southworth
Staff Writer


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The St. Olaf women's basketball team has endured a tough season, beginning the year with a 1-12 mark. Since 2007 began, however, they have started to find their groove despite injuries and other troubles. Most recently, the team defeated Macalester 58-52 last Wednesday and lost a hard-fought game to playoff-bound Carleton 72-62 Sunday afternoon.

During a six-point loss to Bethel in the earlier in January, forward Christina Sampson '07 was hit and suffered a concussion, and was unable to play in both the Macalester and Carleton games.

“It's tough for an athlete to go through during in their last season,” said head coach Pat Buresh about her star senior.

Starting in January, Buresh said the team's performance has been improving. The strong core of players during the last month have been Holly Grimsrud '07, Kelsey Oja '09, Danielle Stoermer '08, Laura Jorgenson '07 and Sampson (who is averaging 12 points a game).

“This group has made us more consistent and they have been very good for us,” said Buresh.

Buresh says she has seen some “good stuff” from the first-year players who have been getting more playing time. “It does take time, but the young players are getting time and improving.”

Even when playing without Sampson, the team was still impressive in their victory over Macalester and the game against Carleton, according to Buresh.

“The biggest thing is that we have improved a great deal from the beginning of the year until now, as anyone who has followed us has seen,” said Buresh.

Buresh is confident with the teams continued improvement of performance, and she hopes to have Sampson able to return for the last few games of the season.

The Oles fell to Gustavus 58-44 on Valentine's Day and will take on the College of St. Catherine on Feb. 17 in St. Paul.

“It will be a tough finish for us, and it's always tough to go on the road. We will have our hands full this week,” said Buresh.

Buresh expects problems from Gustavus, who sport a 20-3 record this year and were MIAC runners-up in 2005-06.

“We just have to continue to focus on getting better, play the people we need to get on the floor,” Buresh said. “That will be the focus heading in to this last week.”





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