OSBA PRE-SEASON PREVIEW: Southwest Academy (Women)
Southwest Academy was one of the youngest teams in the Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association’s (OSBA) Women’s division last season. With a roster featuring only two seniors, Southwest finished the regular season with a record of 3-9.
“Last season we embraced the opportunity to compete against the best teams in Canada and we truly improved every week. The players laid a strong foundation and culture at Southwest Academy. We have taken a huge leap forward this season in large part due to our inaugural class. This year’s team will is skilled and cerebral group who pride themselves on team basketball,” Head Coach Rob Angione commented.
Southwest is confident that their revamped roster and team style of basketball will allow them to have a breakout 2017-18 OSBA season. The program had a busy off-season adding key pieces to their roster. “We have been fortunate to add an extremely talented group of athletes to our youthful core, including six Class of 2018 athletes,” Head Coach Angione added. Key additions include:
Laura Donovan (5’9 G/F), a member of the U17 Team Ontario squad that won silver at the Canada Summer Games this past summer and as well as the A.B. Lucas OFSAA AAA Championship team last year, brings tremendous versatility, leadership and elite level shooting.
Donovan’s teammate at A.B. Lucas, Claire Litchfield (5’7 PG), also joins the team, bringing with her a tremendous amount of experience and poise to the team. She is also recognized as a knock-down shooter.
Transferring from Guelph Prep, Mackenzie Obermayer (6’2 C), will use her experience on Team Ontario this past summer to help lead the team. The Waterloo, Ont. native is a physical player who will give Southwest an interior presence.
Emma Weltz (5’8G), is another OFSAA medalist joining the team. Her high school in Timmins, O'Gorman, earned the silver medal last fall. She brings speed and explosiveness to her new team. Weltz will be integral in dictating the tempo at both ends of the floor this season.
Nell Hoogeveen (6’0 SG), who played on Team Ontario in 2016, provides versatility, length and skill to the program’s guard and wing positions.
In addition to these Class of 2018 recruits, Southwest Academy added Class of 2021 Hayley Woods (5’11 G/F), who played on the Team Ontario U14 development team this summer. Woods is a unique blend of length, skill and instinct. She will be a cornerstone of the Southwest Academy program moving into the future.
Along with a strong and capable recruiting class, Southwest will also turn to key veterans to lead the restored roster to a potential breakout season. These key returnees include:
• Class of 2018 Piper Doo (5’8 G) was a Basketball Without Borders participant and All-Star this summer. She is an athletic point guard who shoots the ball at a very high level. Doo will be extremely valuable to the program on both ends of the floor by setting the tempo and being disruptive on defense this season.
• Class of 2018 Addie Mailhot (5’9 PG) contributes terrific ball distribution as well as versatility to the team.
• Class of 2019 Maggie Denys (5’10 PG) provides incredible three-point shooting and physical backcourt defense.
Southwest Academy enters the 2017-18 season looking to prove that they can play with the best in both the regular season and in the post-season. Last year the team competed hard and, despite their losing record, the season served as a learning opportunity for the entire program. If their talented rookie class and their veterans can work together and perform the way their coach expects, Southwest Academy can be a serious threat this season.