Durand's cagers are contenders despite injuries

By Tim Stried, SID
January 11, 2000

The beginning of the 1999-2000 basketball season didn't exactly go as planned for BC head coach Michele Durand. But despite losing two of her top three scorers to season-ending injuries, Durand has her squad in contention in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference.

Lost for the season are pre-season All-HCAC selection Liz Bock (Maumee), who tore knee cartilage in the fourth game of the season, and talented freshman Michelle Ray (Kenton) who broke a finger in game ten that required surgery. Coupled with a tough non-conference schedule, the Beaver win tally wasn't what the team had projected, but with a 20-point HCAC win over Anderson already under their belt, don't count Bluffton out.

"We've tried to look at the conference season as a whole new season," said Durand. "The games prior to that were difficult and hopefully prepared us for the conference. We've tried to remain positive and realize there is nothing we can do about injuries. We can only control how hard we work."

And leading that hard-working squad is junior Elizabeth Snavely (Defiance), who was named the HCAC Player of the Week the last week in November and is averaging close to 15 points and seven rebounds per game despite fighting through several nagging injuries herself.

Joining Snavely as a top scoring threat is newcomer Kristin Helvey, a freshman point guard from Toledo Central Catholic. Her 5.0 assists per game so far this season leads the HCAC and her 12 points per game average is second best on the team.

Helvey is one of several freshmen that Durand is counting on for quality minutes this season, but without a senior on this year's roster, Durand knows that the next couple of seasons could be when the present campaign really pays off.

"The experience the freshman gain this year will only help us and them for the coming years," said the 1988 BC graduate. "We hopefully will have everyone returning next year. I would think that would make us a pretty good team."

Bluffton finished as the runner-up at the Baldwin-Wallace College Tip-off Tournament in November, and has a core group of juniors ready to provide the leadership. Included in that class are Bree Wood (Wauseon), Jennifer Bear (Grover/Lincolnview), Kristy Crall (Bucyrus/Wynford), and Amy Aschemeier (Napoleon).

Last Modified 12/04/99 by Tim Stried, sports information director.