By: Kirk Jessome
With the return of Diedre Alexander for her fifth season, the entire roster for the Tigers women’s basketball team will be back together again for the 2018-19 season, with the inclusion of a few notable additions.
Robertha Charles has been the leading the Tigers in scoring and rebounding since her rookie season, and now in her third year, Charles has shown no sign of slowing down. Last season Charles averaged 11.3 points and 7.6 rebounds per game, being the only Tiger to average double-digit scoring on the year.
The Tigers have added a number of talented first years to the roster, most notably Lia Kentzler, joining the Tigers from Gottingen, Germany. Kentzler is a 6’1 centre that has shown some outstanding footwork around the paint and will be a strong complement to Charles’ rebounding.
Also joining the roster are Halifax locals Emily Holt and Riley Sood. Both Holt and Sood are combo guards with the ability to play multiple positions, make shots from inside or out, and rebound from the guard position.
A key scorer throughout the season for the Tigers will be Sophie Gaube, who was a major threat from the three point line, shooting nearly 40% from deep. If Gaube can continue that consistency as a deep-ball threat, it will greatly help the Tigers offensive output.
Perhaps the most important factor for the Tigers offence will be the play of the point guard, shooting guard combo of Ariel Provo and Michele Tchiakoua.
Provo is coming off of her first season with the Tigers and has shown a lot of growth in running the point over the summer and preseason, and will look to make an impact as a starter this season.
Tchiakoua is a hard-nosed point guard who uses her handles to create paths to the rim, and isn’t afraid to get into the paint on the defensive end against opponents that would be considered a mismatch on most players.
If Tchiakoua is healthy throughout the season, her leadership at both ends of the floor will be instrumental in pushing the Tigers into a playoff run.
After finishing outside the playoff picture last season with a 5-15 record, the Tigers new defensive focus that has been shown throughout the pre-season will be the biggest difference maker if they are to make the playoffs this year.
The Tigers will begin the 2018-19 season this weekend with back to back games against Cape Breton, starting Saturday night at 6:00pm.