PAINESVILLE, OHIO -- The 2012-13 season gets underway for the Lake Erie College women's basketball team on Tuesday night, Nov. 13, at home against nonconference foe Seton Hill University. tip time is set for 7 p.m. The game can be seen and heard live on the Lake Erie UStream Channel by clicking the "Video" link or the "Live Broadcast" button on the homepage. Craig Deas, "The Voice of the Storm," will call the action.
The Storm is coming off a 16-11 season a year ago and their first appearance in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) tournament. However, the Storm will need to replace the loss of eight graduated seniors – including a trio of 1,000 point scorers – and will look for a quick learning curve for 13 new first-year players.
LIGHTNING QUICK RECAP: Lake Erie opened last season by winning its first seven games and the Storm roared out to a 16-6 start before dropping their final five contests of the season.
OPPOSITION POSITION: The Griffins return four starters from last year's team that went 11-18 overall and 10-12 in the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Seton Hill returns its five leading scorers from a year ago, led by guard Paige Alvianai who averaged 15.5 points per game and connected on 53 three-pointers. Her backcourt mate, Tiara Stossel, averaged 11.9 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. Forward Katie Gattuso led the Griffins in rebounding at 6.9 per game a year ago and also scored 9.3 points per game. Seton Hill is coached by veteran and former University of Miami (Fla.) coach Ferne Labati.
33rd SEASON OF STORM HOOPS: Tuesday night tips off the 33rd season in Lake Erie women's basketball history dating back to the 1978-79 season. Basketball is the oldest varsity sport at LEC. To date, the Storm has posted an overall record of 189-532 (.262). However, over 40 percent of the program's all-time wins have come in the last seven seasons under head coach Bob Booher. This is the Storm's fifth season at the NCAA Division II level and third as a member of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC).
FOR OPENERS: Lake Erie has won two straight season openers – both at home – and now has a record of 7-25 all-time in season openers. Under Bob Booher the Storm are 2-5 in the first game of the season. In home openers, the Storm are 10-22, including a 5-3 mark at the Jerome T. Osborne Family Athletic & Wellness Center since its opening.
GUESS WHO'S BACK: While the Storm roster received a major overhaul this offseason due to the graduation of eight seniors from last year's squad, Lake Erie does have a veteran presence on this year's team. Senior guard Sarah Wojciechowski is back for her fourth year and is again expected to provide an offensive jolt off the bench after shooting 48.3% (14-of-29) from behind the arc last year. She enters the season ranked in the top 10 at LEC in made three-pointers (69). Sophomore Jackie Murray averaged over 15 minutes a game last year as a freshman and started four contests. As a point guard she had 38 assists and 22 steals. Junior Chrissy Delaney returns on the wing afer averaging 3.5 points and 12 minutes per game her first two seasons. The frontcourt should get a boost from the return of Jodie Jindra who missed all of last season with a leg injury. Jindra started 12 games as a freshman, averaging 3.7 points and 3.2 rebounds per game. Redshirt junior wing Chloe Irish appeared in 19 games after missing most of the previous two seasons to injury and junior Kiarra Jones has appeared in 29 games in her first two seasons. Both will provide depth on the perimeter.
HARRIS JOINS STORM: Lake Erie got a big boost heading into the season when senior post Ashar Harris made the decision to transfer from Division I Morehead State and signed with the Storm right before the start of the academic year. The Columbus, Ohio-native averaged 10.1 points and 11.3 rebounds per game at Morehead State and was DI's third-leading rebounder each of the past two seasons. She already has 35 double-doubles in her career.
FRESH FACES: Ashar Harris is just one of 14 newcomers to the Storm program this year, including 13 freshman players. The first-year Storm players are: Shelby Carpenter, Ali Gagne, Carlye Garst, Skylar Hebert, Katy McNally, Lauren Mzarik, Sami Narducci, Dana Salesman, Kaeding Skelton, Tayler Tackett, Sarah Thomas, and Karleigh Weichler.
HARRIS AND MURRAY NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-GLIAC TEAM: Senior post Ashar Harris and sophomore guard Jackie Murray were named to the preseason All-GLIAC South Division Second Team released in October. Harris, a transfer, averaged 10.1 points and 12.4 rebounds per game last season at Division I Morehead State while Murray scored 2.3 points per game as a freshman and was tied for third on the team with 38 assists.
A LOOK AHEAD: Lake Erie is idle until after the Thanksgiving holiday break when they host the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown on Saturday, Nov. 24.