AMES — “I wouldn’t trade Bridget Carleton for any other player in the country. And I mean that.”
That was just some of the high praise delivered from head coach Bill Fennelly during Iowa State women’s basketball media day that took place on Monday.
This is now Bridget Carleton’s team.
Following an eventful summer in which she helped Team Canada bring home a gold medal in the 2017 FIBA AmeriCup.
Carleton is prepared both mentally and physically for an even larger role this year with the Cyclones, where she is expected to be one of the best players in the Big 12.
After shooting nearly 94 percent from the free throw line as a sophomore, it’s no wonder that Fennelly says that he doesn’t even have to look in the gym to know it’s number 21 shooting free throws when he hears a ball bouncing before practice.
With the departures of Jadda Buckley and Seanna Johnson, the Cyclones lose a bulk of their scoring from last year’s NCAA Tournament team. After averaging 15 points a game, expect Carleton to look to create her own shots more often, something she made an effort to improve during the offseason. As a freshman, Carleton attempted and made more threes than twos. Prior to her third year, Carleton says that finishing ability at the rim is a skill she has refined and looks to utilize more in this coming season.
If this team is going to make a run, they’re going to have to do it together.
The feel around this group is that they have already developed a strong chemistry despite only being six practices in. Senior guard Emily Durr and junior forward Meredith Burkhall both look to join the unanimous All-Big 12 First Team selection in Carleton to hopefully another NCAA Tournament.