Everett CC women want the ‘big dance’

  • KEVIN BREIWICK / Herald Writer
  • Wednesday, November 29, 2000 9:00pm
  • Sports

By KEVIN BREIWICK

Herald Writer

For the last three years, only Skagit Valley has had better league record than the Everett women’s basketball team.

“We think we have the program going in the right directions,” said Chet Hovde, who is in his 12th year of coaching the women’s team.

The Trojans finished 17-13 last year, losing to Peninsula for a Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges Northern Division playoff spot after being ahead by 11 points at halftime.

This year’s goal is to go the “big dance,” but will narrow it’s sights on a playoff spot – a top four finish.

But the team will have to overcome its youth and lack of size. The Trojans return one player – Lake Stevens graduate Chelene Alkire. Lake Stevens grad Melissa Mitchell is the tallest Trojan at 5-foot-10.

Hovde said the team makes up for the lack of height by relying on its speed and shooters, hoping to run fast breaks.

“We’ll get better as the year goes on,” Hovde said. “We rebound OK even though we’re small.”

The team hosts the Everett Community College tournament this weekend. The Trojans open up against Grays Harbor on Friday at 8 p.m.

Edmonds CC’s women’s basketball coach Eric Cole will be taking on the task of rebuilding a program, which usually means a difficult season, but the first-year coach wants to win and he doesn’t see any reason why the team can’t this year.

The top four teams get a playoff spot in the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges this year, which will help the Tritons in their hunt for a playoff spot.

“I’m here to win and build a program – that’s the whole goal,” Cole said. “I want to win right away … I want to bring this program to the level of the other EdCC teams.”

An EdCC men’s assistant for four years, Cole decided to make the jump to a head coach when the women’s job opened up at the end of last season.

Cole inherits a team that finished last in the league and won just two games last year.

Cole didn’t get the job until the end of the high school season, which sent him scrambling to recruit players. “I recruited as hard as I could,” he said.

Cole managed to find area players to join this year’s team and he said bringing players from successful programs helps bring a winning attitude.

The Tritons return Heather Dixon, Rachel Leary and Atthi Negath from last year’s team. “I think it’s more enjoyable for the sophomores this year,” Cole said.

Cole said the team will rely on its inside game along with the team’s unity this season.

Edmonds’ has a month to prepare before league play starts. The Tritons open against Skagit Valley – the top team in the league last year – on Jan. 3.

This weekend, Edmonds competes in the Everett Community College tournament. The Tritons play Spokane on Friday at 2 p.m.

“For them (the team), their goal should be to win it,” Cole said.

  • Walker on executive board: In addition to his duties as the Everett CC athletic director and men’s basketball coach, Larry Walker is also the NWAACC executive board chairman. The board is made up of two commissioners from each region, an executive director and a president from Washington and Oregon. Walker oversees the five annual meetings, which go over business issues within the league. Walker was nominated to the position last year.

  • EdCC wins own tourney: The Edmonds CC men’s basketball team began the season by winning the Edmonds Turkey Shootout on Nov. 26. with a 79-72 victory over Yakima Valley. Edmonds’ Stafon Lawson earned the All-Tournament honors and teammate T.J. Williams was named the tournament’s MVP. Everett opened the tournament with a 90-85 loss to Yakima Valley CC, though the team was ahead 47-38 at halftime. Everett guard Eric Avery led the team with 24 points in the game.
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