Guards Jenna Bartsokas and Anna Bowers are going to be the leaders in playing time. After that Lipscomb coach Frank Bennett is looking at a number of options as the Lady Bisons play Harding University in an exhibition game Saturday night at 6:30 at Allen Arena.
“This will be our first time in uniform and the first time playing in front of fans this season,” Bennett said. “We want to try to work out some of the jitters of a game situation.
“We also want to try to figure out the substitution patterns. It is good to work against someone different. Hopefully, we will start out playing really hard. And hopefully we will settle in from the initial jitters and play well together.”
Bartsokas is a preseason Atlantic Sun All-Conference pick. Bowers has picked up her game on several levels, especially her shooting.
“We are going to have them play more minutes than we might with some other players because they are both doing such a good job,” Bennett said. “They are both really playing well. They can do a lot of things.
“They provide a lot of scoring for us. Each player has a different role. Scoring is not the most important thing. They can defend and handle the ball. But their role is to use their skills to score.”
Bartsokas has been a steady player throughout her career with the Lady Bisons. Bowers has matured as a junior and is playing up to expectations in preseason.
“Anna has very good form as a shooter,” Bennett said. “It has just taken her a couple of years to reach her potential.
“She has done a lot of good things the past two years. But everything looks like it is coming together for her this season. She is playing with a lot of confidence.”
Bennett is going to be taking a long look at the No. 3 and No. 4 positions as well as developing his rotation during the Harding game.
“There are several players in the mix at the No. 3 and No. 4 positions,” Bennett said. “We have to decide if we are going to be eight deep, nine deep or 10 deep.
“In our program over the years we have used a nine or 10-player rotation. Last year we went more than that which I am not sure was a good thing. We were just trying to get somebody to emerge.”
Bennett wants to determine the personality of his team as well.
“We need to get kind of a gauge of where we are before we have a week of preparation for the Air Force game.” Bennett said. “We don’t want to waste this opportunity against Harding.
“We would like to come out and play very aggressively with a lot of tempo. We would like to start games with that kind of attitude. We want to get off to good starts, especially at home.”
The Lady Bisons will open the regular season Friday, Nov. 12, at 2 p.m. when they travel to Colorado Springs to play the Air Force Academy.
Written by Mark McGee, Senior Publisher/Director of Media Relations.