Jon Gin, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, enters his second year at AU with a young team focused on speed. The team rostered 13 freshmen this year, four upperclassmen and a graduate student for a total of 18 players.
“We are young pups, for sure,” Gin said, “But you know, we’re energetic because we are so young … We’re all about energy and flying around and trying to create chaos on defense. And hopefully, that leads to fast break points on offense.”
Gin emphasizes to his freshmen that they are building a foundation for the next 40 years of AU Women’s Basketball centered around speed-of-play. He mentioned the team’s speed had improved on offense last season, and defensive speed was Gin’s focus this year.
Off the court, Gin said the program is trying to “build something that these kids will belong to forever.”
Gin mentions graduate returner Alexis Dellinger as a team leader. Dellinger works full-time as a teacher, attends graduate school and plays AU Women’s Basketball.
“She’s someone who’s definitely living out her dream, and that’s one of the big things that we promote here in our program,” Gin said.
The team’s senior captain this year is Jade Shipley, a guard from Westfield, Indiana. Gin said that Shipley is “someone who’s super competitive, gives it her all each and every day is really growing in her leadership role this year, especially with all of our young kids.”
Shipley said the women’s basketball program focuses on team bonding and playing together. She said, “I hope as a team we turn people’s heads and let them see all the hard work we put in and how it pays off.”
Another Senior, Brookelynn Cardwell said, “Basketball has always been a de-stressor for me and I am finally able to physically participate for my last year. I’m excited for the year and to be able to finally show my coaches and teammates what I am capable of on the court, whether that be in practice or game.”
Cardwell, who transferred to AU her sophomore year, has had to miss the basketball season due to injury. She was cleared for her senior season after receiving a cortisone shot and participating in physical therapy.
Coach Gin mentions the depth of the women’s basketball team as a strength. He said, “I think anywhere from one to 18 we can play it’d be effective in their role.”
Looking ahead, the team plays Earlham for the ‘I Heart PJP game’ on Jan. 28th at 1:00 p.m. This is their opportunity to honor President John Pistol.