By Ryan Kuhn
Last March the Rams were just one win away from that goal, but lost to Santa Rosa Junior College in the finals. Now, nine months later, the team is lacing up their shoes for a fresh start with new faces and a new attitude.
Only five players are returning from last year’s team, but the 2011-2012 freshmen class makes head coach Jamie Hayes feel very optimistic.
“We have a lot of new faces coming in but I really think they are going to have an immediate impact especially in the post,” said Hayes, who is in her tenth year coaching. “Our post game is significantly stronger.”
With the departure of last year’s starting power forward Shawnte Taylor and point guard Hallie Menses, who transferred to Weber State and Long Beach State on scholarships, City College will feature a freshmen tandem of Araymis Edwards-Glenn and Rachelle Smith.
Edwards-Glenn, a 5’8” forward, attended Westbury Christan in Houston where her team finished 39-1 last season having won the state championship three times in the last four seasons.
“In high school I came from a three-time state championship team, and I came here because they have a record of winning,” she said.
Smith comes from across the Bay from Oakland and at 6’0” looks to give the Rams more size in the post.
Sophomore Janis Peterson, who averaged 22 points a game and was the Coast Conference scoring leader, returns this year.
“I feel like I have to get stronger mentally, keeping myself in the game even when I make mistakes,” Peterson said. “I’m really close with a lot of my teammates and they all look up to me, so I think it’s my responsibility to keep the team together.”
She won’t be alone as she has fellow returning sophomores Stephanie Lu, Samantha Hunkin and Chiarra Ducan-Perry to help take City College back into the post season.
“The sophomores realize that they were so close and they definitely want to go back,” said Hayes looking back on last year’s 27-win season. “I think that pretty much anything can happen.”
City College will get a chance to play Santa Rosa twice this season as both teams will play in each other’s pre-conference tournaments. But for now the Rams look toward their first game of the season against Mission College on Nov. 7 at 5 pm in the Wellness Center.
Everyone is anxious to start the season.
“We have been counting down to it,” Edwards-Glenn said, with a smile. “Six days and counting.”