TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) The College of Southern Idaho Women's Basketball team looks for a fresh start in the new year, after a difficult 2018.
The team's leading scorer quit and the girls had to dig deep and find themselves in her absence.
Now coach Randy Rogers likes the direction they're headed as they prepare for a homestand this week. CSI has been on the road for 12 out of the 17 total games this season.
For sophomore Kaela McClure, "I mean preseason is where you learn the most, especially about your teammates."
Most recently the ladies went 1-2 at the Las Vegas tournament.
One of those teams was full of former Division I players in the Southern Utah All-Stars.
Sophomore Brooke Haney explained, "they looked for the open passes, I think a lot of us sometimes rush shots or get the quickest thing done which we think will work all the time, but typically doesn't."
Rogers added, "it's fun to watch, not fun to play against skilled, smart, pretty athletic kids, so that game is a little frustrating to get beat." 'To come back the next day and probably the Central Arizona game was frustrating, we had a 13 point lead entering the fourth quarter and lost that one by one."
The girls faced a major transition early this month, when leading scorer Denajha Kie quit the team.
"She was injured a little bit, I think she was having a hard time adjusting out of the Army to civilian life. being around kids five years younger, 17 and 18 year olds, when she was 24," added Rogers. "It's disappointing when she was here because I asked her to play 40 minutes a game, be our leading scorer, second leading rebounder and she had that calming force on the floor. We really needed her."
Other players had to step up, but for sophomore Kaela McClure, she's pleased with the progress.
"There was one major thing that happened this weekend, we were there for each other, we connected. Now we play Salt Lake and we have connected."
The team hosts Western Wyoming Thursday at 7:30 p.m., followed by Salt Lake Saturday at 3 p.m.