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Defiance to Begin New Era in 2018-19 Season

Defiance to Begin New Era in 2018-19 Season
DEFIANCE, OHIO – The Defiance College women's basketball team will look to a balanced squad in 2018-19 under the guidance of first year head coach Allan King, Jr. 
 
The Yellow Jackets finished with a 7-18 overall record last season and a 5-13 mark in Heartland Collegiate Conference play. Defiance returns nine letter winners and four starters from a year ago, including seniors Lauren Rogers (Munger, Mich./Bay  City Central), Ashley Lee (Millington, Mich./Millington), and Sam Ervin (Bloomdale/ Elmwood), and junior Shelby Stamm (Bellevue/Bellevue).
 
Here is a breakdown of the 2018-19 women's basketball team, by position:
 
GUARDS
Defiance will look to top returners, Shelby Stamm, Lauren Rogers and Ashley Lee to lead the Yellow Jacket offense. 
 
Stamm returns after a strong sophomore campaign. The junior played in 21 games while starting 19 for the Yellow Jackets last season. The Bellevue, Ohio native finished second on the team in points per game, finishing with an average of 11.7. Shooting 40.5% from behind the arc was enough to give Stamm the highest percentage on the team.
 
Rogers appeared in 25 games while making 24 starts for the Yellow Jackets in 2017-18. The senior averaged 26.1 minutes per game, reeling in 4.4 rebounds per game. She finished the season averaging 10.6 points per game. Rogers enters her second year with the Purple and Gold after transferring in as a junior.  
 
Lee begins her second season with the Yellow Jackets after transferring in from Delta College last season. The senior featured in 25 games, starting 24. Lee shot 33.3% from behind the arc during 2017-18, while grabbing 25 steals and 36 rebounds. 
 
Defiance will look to depth in the guard position as the Purple and Gold will feature sophomore returner Kalyn Pickens (Fort Wayne, Ind/R. Nelson Snider), as well as junior returners Liz Martin (Bellefontaine/Bellefontaine) and Sidney Faine (Bluffton/Ada).
 
Pickens featured in 22 contests during her freshman campaign. The sophomore will look to contribute valuable minutes after averaging 30.3% from the field last season.
 
Martin competed in 11 games during her sophomore campaign. The Bellefontaine native averaged 30.8% from the field and grabbed 11 rebounds last season. 
 
Faine returns to the Purple and Gold after featuring in 17 games as a sophomore. The junior averaged 32.4% from the field last year and 20% from beyond the arc. 
 
The Yellow Jackets will also return sophomores Taylor Haines (Stryker/Stryker) and A'Mia Brewer (Saginaw, Mich./Bridgeport), as well as welcoming in freshman Briawna Francis (Indianapolis, Ind./Avon), Taylor Day (West Mansfield/North Union), Je'Kya Cummings (Franklin, Ind./Franklin Community) and Nysha Speed (Sterling Heights, Mich./L'Anse Creuse). 
 
FORWARDS
The Yellow Jackets will rely on both returning talent as well as a couple newcomers in the forward position. 
 
Returning for the Purple and Gold are senior Sam Ervin (Bloomdale/Elmwood) and junior Danielle Carruthers (New London/New London). Ervin saw action in 24 games last season, starting in all 24. The senior averaged 12.8 points per game while shooting 39.2% from the field. The Bloomdale, Ohio native also averaged a team high 6.8 rebounds per game. 
 
Carruthers saw action in 18 contests during the 2017-18 season, starting one. The junior averaged 2.3 rebounds per game while shooting 53.3% from the field, worthy of the second highest shooting percentage on the team. 
 
A new Yellow Jacket will battle for playing time in the 2018-19 season as well. Freshman Michaela Gilliam (Indianapolis, Ind./Broad Ripple) will begin her first season with the Purple and Gold. 
 
SEASON OUTLOOK
The Yellow Jackets open the 2018-19 campaign on November 13 as they welcome Albion College to the Karl H. Weaner Center.
 
After opening the season with Albion the Purple and Gold travel to North Park University where they will compete against Elmhurst on November 16, and North Park on November 17. 
 
The Yellow Jackets will begin Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play on Saturday, December 1 as they welcome Rose-Hulman to the Weaner Center. 
 
The HCAC schedule will take a brief break as the Purple and Gold host Trine University on December 19 and Siena Heights on December 28. 
 
A stretch of three home HCAC contests against Anderson, Transylvania, and Bluffton will begin the new year for the Purple and Gold as they get into the heart of HCAC action. The Yellow Jackets will complete the regular season with two home games against Earlham on February 13, and Hanover on February 16.
 
The HCAC Tournament is slated to begin Monday, February 18. The championship game is scheduled to take place on Saturday, February 23.