WCCC basketball teams have high expectations
By Dave Mackall
Published: Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
Westmoreland County Community College basketball teams have produced their share of memories in six seasons of existence.
Their coaches want more.
“We need more talented kids coming out of Westmoreland County high schools,” WCCC men's coach Andrew Colosimo said. “It's there, but most times, a player wants that four-year experience. We're here as an option.”
Entering the week, the WCCC women's team was off to a 5-1 start, and the men's squad was 2-2. Both compete in Division III of the National Junior College Athletic Association but frequently load their early-season schedule with Division I and II teams.
As with any two-year junior college, WCCC players quite often look to transfer to four-year NCAA or NAIA schools.
“We've had some talented players,” WCCC women's coach Scott Hillen said. “This year, depth-wise, we probably have the most talented group in terms of skill. We've got a little more depth at the guard and forward positions than in other years.”
WCCC won 20 games in back-to-back seasons in 2009 and '10, when the Wolfpack were led by Jamie Henry, a 6-foot-1 forward who paced NJCAA Division III with 18.0 rebounds per game during her final season.
Henry transferred to NCAA Division I Cleveland State but left for personal reasons.
While the WCCC men's program most recently had produced several transfers to four-year schools (NCAA Division II California (Pa.) and NAIA Division II Point Park), the current Wolfpack team is led by guard Andy Carter, the Norwin High School product who transferred from NCAA Division III Washington & Jefferson and was leading NJCAA Division III in scoring (30.2 ppg.).
Colosimo said Carter decided to transfer closer to home at WCCC because NCAA Division III schools, such as W&J, do not offer athletic scholarships.
“He's a bright kid, but he was paying too much out of pocket,” Colosimo said. “We're trying to get him some help. He's an academic kid, and he'll probably finish this semester with a 4.0 (grade-point average).”
While NCAA Division II schools Slippery Rock and Wheeling Jesuit are keeping close tabs on Carter, Colosimo said, there's plenty of Division I attention for the 6-1 sophomore.
Boston University, Brown, Evansville, Radford, San Jose State and South Dakota have shown interest. Lehigh, Colosimo said, was willing to offer Carter a “preferred walk-on” status.
Every year, WCCC coaches scramble to assemble a roster. But both have been able to sustain success.
“We don't have big numbers on the roster,” Hillen said, referring to WCCC's nine-player women's team, “but we usually end up with a solid rotation of seven or eight players.”
Leading scorer Danielle Murphy, a Hempfield High School graduate, was expected to return to the lineup this week after being sidelined for three games with a sprained ankle.
“The players have been pushing each other in practice,” Hillen said. “The chemistry is there. They all get along on and off the floor. We just don't have big numbers because lot of girls who say they're going to play end up with work schedules that conflict too much. But we've managed to get good enough numbers every year.”
Dave Mackall is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-380-5617.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- St. Vincent playing underdog role at NCAA tournament
- Pitt, WVU are gone, but EWL coaches confident in quality of wrestling
- NCAA-bound Penn State Behrend forged by Central America trip
- District college notes: Seton Hill’s Voytek headed to Division II nationals
- UPG hockey team wins CHE tournament title, heads to nationals
- Seton Hill equestrian team sends 5 riders to regional finals
- Breaking down conference wrestling tournaments
- Seton Hill baseball team makes early impact in PSAC
- Daily Courier roundup: PSU Fayette teams fall in USCAA Tournament
- A-K Valley campus clippings: Kiski Area product Weyant named NCAC Player of Week