July 13, 2024

CSM Women’s Basketball Heads Into New Season

women's basketball

The College of Southern Maryland women’s basketball team is heading into its new season with only one returning player from last year. While some might label this season a “growing year,” Head Coach Ardell Jackson, who is in his third year with the team, is enthusiastic about his young team.

“We only have one sophomore, Siani Downs, who played for me in my first season at CSM and sat out last year; everyone else is a freshman,” Mr. Jackson said. “We have a very good group and they are working hard and doing all the things that we are asking of them and really representing CSM athletics in a very positive way.”

The women’s basketball team has already demonstrated some key strengths — speed, athleticism, hustle, shooting, and chemistry, Mr. Jackson said. “These young ladies really enjoy playing with each other and really look out for each other.”

In addition to returning player Saundra “Siani” Downs of Pomfret (guard), who is this year’s team captain, the 2017-18 team includes Courtney Herbert of Fort Washington (guard), Deana Monroe of Suitland (guard), Alexis Chase of Largo (guard), Jennifer Nanosi of Bladensburg (guard), Te’a Green of Capitol Heights (forward), Aliyah Jackson of Laurel (forward), Tatyana Jones of Prince Frederick (forward), Keisha Cooper of College Park (guard), Alexandra Allen of Billings, Montana (forward), Shayla Glover of Upper Marlboro (forward) and Amashia Moyd of Gaithersburg (guard).

Mr. Jackson noted that Ms. Downs’ leadership as the team captain has set a strong tone as the team begins the season. “She is very positive and really gets her teammates motivated to work hard in the classroom and on the court.”

One of the team goals for the year is to shine both on and off the court. “Our overall expectation this season is to compete on the court while being successful in the classroom,” Head Coach Jackson said. “We feel that this team has the talent to do great things on the court, but we are pushing our players to strive for that same excellence on the academic side. We have a great group of student athletes and they are working extremely hard to achieve all of the goals that we have set as a team.”

CSM Executive Director of Student Life and Athletics Michelle Ruble said it is no accident that this year’s team is made up of academically inclined athletes. “The head coach and his staff developed new recruitment criteria, which assisted them to determine the athletes who want to succeed academically and athletically,” Ms. Ruble said. “They believe it has worked well and our team has a solid core of athletes who will not only represent CSM well on the court, but will also do the same in the classroom. We are all looking forward to seeing the ladies compete.”

The regular season includes close to 30 games and runs from Oct. 20 through Feb. 11. But Jackson is already looking beyond regular season play. “Of course, with every team you want to win the championship, and we feel that if this team can continue to work hard academically and on the court that they will have opportunity night-in and night-out to compete for a Region XX championship,” he said.

Working with Head Coach Jackson are assistant coaches Marcus LeCounte and Kim Barnes. Mr. LeCounte will serve as the team’s strength and conditioning coach and Ms. Barnes as the recruiting coordinator.

For information about the Hawks’ schedule, statistics or roster, visit the college’s website.

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