COLLEGE STATION-The Texas A&M women's basketball team will scrimmage at Reed Arena approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the Saturday, Oct. 20 football game between the Aggies and LSU.
As the Texas A&M women's basketball team continues practice, Coach Gary Blair is pleased with the progress of the Aggies, especially in the blending of nine returning players and six freshmen. After two intense weeks of practice, the Aggies finished up this past Saturday with a Maroon-White scrimmage game that allowed the staff to view their growth and chart areas of improvement needed over the next few weeks.
Blair says the workouts have been more advanced on the offensive end in large part to the team's trip to Italy this past August.
"Our ability to get in 10 practices before going to Italy has really allowed us to be a little further ahead offensively," said Blair. "It was a wonderful opportunity to for our veterans to knock off a few cob webs while introducing our newcomers to our offensive system."
The Aggies are coming off of a 24-11 season but excitement is spreading two-fold this fall with the program's best-ever non-conference schedule as well as the ground-breaking entry into the Southeastern Conference. Texas A&M will start the season with consecutive games against nationally-ranked opponents. The Aggies travel to Louisville to play the Cardinals on November 9th before returning home to battle Penn State on November 14 and then No. 2-ranked Connecticut on November 18. There are also key match-ups later that include Southern Cal, TCU, Kansas State as well as a possible contest with Notre Dame in the World Vision Classic in Las Vegas, Nevada in mid-December.
"We have never shied away from playing anyone and we are certainly excited about our non-conference schedule," said Blair. "It has always been my belief that to grow our program with our community that we need to bring the best possible basketball to Reed Arena and that's exactly where we have done this season."
As for the team's scrimmage, the Aggies played against each other as well as their men's scrimmage team in four ten-minute periods. Junior Kelsey Bone led all scorers with 21 points followed by Karla Gilbert with 12 and Adrienne Pratcher with 11. Freshman Courtney Walker was the leading rebounder with 11 followed by Gilbert and Kristi Bellock with seven.
"We're not quite ready to lace them up and turn on the lights yet but we are moving in the right direction," said Blair. "We have each practice outlined from this point on to insure that we are laying the necessary groundwork for our challenging schedule."
Good seats are still available but with the nation's best visiting Reed Arena fans are asked to purchase their season tickets at http://www6.ticketingcentral.com/V2/PickASection.aspx?t=B92439678CF78F28C58F0E7