HAYS - After having their season cut short less than 24-hours before the start of their first-round game at the NCAA Tournament this past March, the Fort Hays State women’s basketball team is back on the court with their first official practices of the 2020-21 season.
The Tigers graduated four of the most decorated seniors in program history and have six true-freshmen on the roster.
“We have a lot of new faces and although they’re all pretty talented kids it just takes a while to get everything straight and for them to know where they’re going” said 13th year head coach Tony Hobson.
“There’s not two of three of them that I just took a shot on and hoping they develop.” Hobson said. “These are all pretty accomplished players and [we’re] looking for a lot of big contributors out of that class.”
The Tigers return three seniors led by starting point guard Jaden Hobbs who earned third-team All-MIAA honors last season after leading the team with 12.6 points per game and was second in the MIAA and third in FHSU program history with 4.7 assists per game.
Whitney Randall is expected to move into a full-time starting role after starting in 20 of the Tigers 30 games a season ago. Randall averaged 9.0 points and 4.0 rebounds per game.
Madison Mittie came off the bench in all 30 games last season and averaged 4.0 points in 13.7 minutes per contest.
FHSU also returns juniors Cydney Bergman, Hailey Walker and Cassidy Haufler. Bergman is expected to play an even bigger role this season after averaging 7.2 points and 3.2 rebounds per game off the bench last season.
Walker missed the first portion of last season with a shoulder injury. She played in 19 games and averaged 2.0 points. Haufler appeared in 19 games and averaged 1.8 points and 2.0 rebounds.
Sophomores Lauryn Reither and Allison McFarren both received valuable playing time as true freshman last season.
Reither, who was coming off a knee injury in high school, played in 25 games and averaged 2.8 points and dished out 25 assists, eight of them in a win against Saint Mary in late November.
McFarren appeared in 22 games and averaged 2.6 points per game. She scored a career-high 15 which included 3-for-3 shooting from behind the 3-point line against Emporia State.
The Tigers have had their exhibition games with UConn and Kansas State canceled and are unsure if they will be able to schedule and scrimmages before their season opener against Washburn on Wednesday, November 19.