Herb?s excited

'IT'S great to be involved in Coffs Harbour's first foray into State League Women's Basketball. I'm confident that we can show the that their faith in establishing the women's program is well founded' ? coach Herb Haddon.

This, from a man who previous to arriving in Coffs Harbour had only coached men.

But now he has taken the plunge to coach women. Strength, courage and patience are his greatest obvious aptitudes.

Herb has had a successful career in coaching junior representative teams for over 10 years now.

His Illawarra teams, men, won two State Championships and Division 1 Country Championships.

He has been invited to coach Country Tour teams on five occasions with his teams making the semi-finals on a few occasions.

But now he is extremely excited and cannot wait for the first SBL clash.

The first game for the Camera House Suns Women will be on Saturday night at 7pm.

Assistant coach Laurie Van Loo ? brings more than just support to the team, but great leadership, insight and direction.

Also starting her career in the Illawarra southlands, Laurie has had extensive experience from initiating clubs and running competitions, to taking representative teams through to State Championships or coaching at the Pacific Coast Slam.

"One of my best sporting moments was in 1990. I ended up with the Under 16 girls and boys, because the boys coach had given up on them a month before the Classics. I was in Mackay for eight days, the girls came fifth in the State and the boys ended up 12th out of 24 teams and they were very appreciative of my effort."

Manager Wendy Edgar ? an experienced and extremely motivated sportswoman who, only some months back, returned from the Masters Basketball Championships with gold.

Her fitness is of paramount importance and her experience invaluable. Wendy not only manages the team, but also works out and trains alongside.

Team profiles ? Captain Bianca Graetz exudes enthusiasm and her drive to form this team was outstanding.

She exhibits the strength and willpower required to be the forerunner and injects a liveliness which is contagious.

Bee is an inspirational leader, not only in the way she plays, but how she handles herself both on and off the courts.

Forward Aliesha Ragen demonstrates not only composure but also control even under pressure.

With the strength and co-ordination she plays a wonderful anchor role for the defence.

Play it, live it and love it has obviously given Liesh that edge throughout her elite basketball stardom and, of course, her winning three-point shooting.

Tamworth import Lisa Fahey has incredible history including the Intensive Training Camp with Basketball NSW, captain of Northern New South Wales Under 17 Womens Tour in Queensland, Captain NSW Women's Basketball Team on USA tour, and Hunter Valley All Stars.

She has brought to the team, raw guts and has already, made a real difference.

Fitness, anticipation and reach are Bonnie Kuchel's best attributes to the team's strength as a centre.

Enjoyment is the name of the game plus every other sport including golf, soccer and swimming.

Regan Reegs Kama is champing at the bit to get back on court. She started playing State League when she was an under 16 and brings multi-skilled talents to the team.

She will play a pivotal role with her incredible possession rate and is a great game tactician.

Speedy Kerry Smith never, never seems to run out of energy. This little livewire learned her guard skills at an early age and controls the cherry pick to a tee.

Kezza is very motivated and hopes to inspire others with fitness. After competing at The Aussie titles for women's boxing, she received silver, so is sure to be a great hit.

With her ultimate dream to play ball in the States, Eden Conklin's impeccable achievements to date, will certainly support her basketball career.

As a fierce competitor with the iron will to win, Eden has been rewarded as the Most Valuable Player many times, demonstrating initiative, skill and game focus.

Rajanee Wonisch shows poise and professionalism as she snakes through the opponent's defence to capitalise with pinpoint accuracy.

In an exhibition of fundamental basketball, Raj is a shining light and positive influence in her role as guard.

Another Coffs star, Emma Van der Waal, has been part of the Coffs Harbour scene for many years and with great results. With quick hands, she displays wonderful balance and timing.

Katie Henry is both a charmer and champion who always has a party in the paint with offensive rebounds and put-backs.

Her leadership and power-house strength enables her to push to the limits and restrict the opponents offensive execution.

Rookie junior Clare Thomson has already proved to the team that she is a force not to be intimidated.

Chocky found at an early age that basketball is better than netball and has been a loud enforcer or end-to-end menace, through her career with the Suns reps.

Experienced junior representative and chocoholic, Millie Bendell changed over to basketball six years ago. With aspirations of reaching higher levels, Millie has virtually become a scoring machine scrapping for every loose ball.

Angela Walls is sure to leave a sparkle in every spectators heart, along with her uncanny ability to find an open shot against defensive traffic, will have the crowd cheering.

Injury prevents immediate impact, but don't hold your breath, as when she returns, she will astound.

- Don't miss the Camera House State League action this weekend. The women will play on Saturday night at 7pm and the men on Sunday at 11am.

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