Lady Toppers Hoops: Hilltopper Hysteria Takeaways
There’s no question the Western Kentucky Lady Toppers are in a completely different stratosphere than they were just a few short years ago. In the 2011–12 season, the Lady Toppers lost a school record 21 games and remains the only season in the history of the program the team garnered single digit wins.
Since then, they have won no fewer than 22 games, have collected conference championships in three of five years and have their eyes on the next step: Repeat as conference champions and earn an NCAA Tournament win.
On Friday the 13th, WKU was scary good. For the longest time, WKU has had very little size, and it has proven fatal against teams with bulk inside. WKU finally has legitimate size, boasting six players on the roster 6'1" or taller.
6'4" Freshman Raneem Elgedawy was particularly impressive, scoring ten points and grabbing four rebounds. Freshman guard Nichel Tampa chipped in 11 points and dished out a few assists. Seemingly everyone, veteran or newcomer, contributed something at Hysteria.
This was not your typical preseason scrimmage. Of course they weren’t polished, but they are already playing at a high level. The raw talent and depth is immediately impressive.
WKU returns two legitimate stars, seniors Tashia Brown and Ivy Brown. They both scored 13 points per game last year and both were McDonald’s All-American Game nominees coming out of high school. Although WKU loses all-time greats Micah Jones and Kendall Noble, there are capable understudies ready to move into the limelight.
Sidnee Bopp made a name for herself in the 2017 Conference USA Tournament, nailing 12 three-pointers in three games. Whitney Creech showed flashes of brilliance last season. Other veteran names on the roster have contributed significant minutes in their careers already on the Hill. The newcomers have impressive resumes, as well.
I said it in my player preview articles and I will say it again:
If you haven’t seen the Lady Toppers, you’re missing greatness. The WKU Lady Toppers are not going to play around this year. They are extremely well coached, and they finally have the size to stand even with anyone in the country. From what I saw tonight, I would not be surprised to see this team end up as good as the team that nearly upset Texas in the NCAA Tournament in 2015.
Consider me impressed, Lady Toppers. Let’s see if they meet their potential.