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January 31, 2023

Seahawks scrap season amid player shortage | Women’s basketball

Cabrillo will continue to develop a core unit for next season

APTOS—The Cabrillo College women’s basketball team had a tough decision to make during the offseason.

It was either go into the season with a limited roster or continue practicing to develop for next year.

The program as a whole concluded that taking a year off to regroup was the best option, according to Cabrillo College Athletic Director Mark Ramsey.

“It wasn’t something that the administration just handed down, it was kind of a team consensus as well to put it on hold and come back next year,” he said.

The Seahawks hope to recruit more players in addition to working with the talent they already have during their significantly extended offseason.

Despite the hiatus, the team is still practicing together and building connections moving forward.

Sophomore guard and team captain Renee Parker is one of several players who will be redshirting this season to prepare for next year.

The Soquel High alumna said there were more factors than just a lack of players that went into the team’s decision. 

“It was just a lack of recruiting, not having a coach, and not knowing what was going on,” Parker said. “I think we’re using this time now to bond with each other because you have to have good chemistry on the court to play good.”

The Seahawks brought on board Sean Lynch to take the helm after previous head coach John Wilson retired.

So far, the first-year coach said he likes what he’s seen from his novel team.

“A lot of the girls are new to the program, and I think everyone is kind of viewing it as an opportunity to build for next year,” Lynch said. “We have a small team right now, but they’re the type of players and people you want to start with.”

The backlash of the Covid-19 pandemic was also a major reason why Cabrillo faced a shortage of players over the offseason. But, they aren’t the only program that experienced this problem.

“We’ve had to suspend other sports since Covid, getting students back. It’s not what we want but it does happen,” Ramsey said. “They’ve found that women’s sports have really taken a hit post-Covid.”

The Seahawks last season finished with a 7-15 overall record and went 5-5 in Coast Conference South Division play, while averaging 58 points per game.

With a small roster and a new head coach, Lynch said their focus shifted to player development for next season.  

“I feel really good about where we’re at chemistry-wise and becoming a team,” he said. “Hopefully that can be a foundation for next year.”

Much of the team consists of freshmen, including guards Lucy Moreles (Watsonville High) and Nicole Fraser-Thiede (Kirby High), and forwards Whittaker Miller (Santa Cruz High), Haley Ortega (Aptos High) and Trisha Quintero-Barba (Santa Cruz High).

Cabrillo initially had 11 players available, which may have allowed a season but for a multitude of reasons that number went down, Ramsey said. 

“It was just not going to be something that was good for the program,” he said. “We felt it was best to cancel the season instead of having to do it later down the road when we lost more players.”

It’ll take nearly two years for Cabrillo to see any action on the court, but in the meantime it’s also a chance for newly acquired players to show what they can do.

“Next year it will be pretty special because we’ll have a team that we’ve been working on all this time off the court, and we’ll get to bring it on the court,” Parker said.

3 COMMENTS

  1. As a trustee of the college, I am hopeful this will be a team building experience this year. I look forward to the womens’ basketball team having enough players to have a complete squad next year.

  2. Steve, no one cares that you are a trustee, which has zero application to the women’s basketball program. Heck, if you had any influence whatsoever, why did you not intervene to keep the program viable with recruiting and so forth? You are impotent in thought and deed. No other trustee comments on this site, thank goodness. You have a really weird sense of self importance, somewhat disturbing.

    Folks, and possibly the Cabrillo administration, please remove this immature and sad person from public office, and certainly do not vote for him for anything else. Let’s hope he leaves our community and moves to yet another community soon. He is an embarrassment.

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