World News – USA – Women’s Basketball Notebook: Hartford’s Morgan Valley is ready for the long wait


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Morgan Valley had to wait … and wait … and wait a little longer for their second season at Hartford University to begin.

On Tuesday – assuming there are no COVID-related interruptions – the Hawks will finally, finally, be playing an actual game. You will immerse yourself right in the America East v Maine game.

« We should have opened against Maine (Saturday), » said Valley, « but because they couldn’t get more than 50 people we had to play here. « . ”

Hartford, as you might have guessed, is on the long list of college basketball programs hit by the coronavirus. Training started in September. 21 but only lasted seven days after some players tested positive. Weeks later there was another shutdown.

« We had players who came back at different times, » said Valley. “We had three players, then two more players. ”

« We’ve had 18 exercises in total now and were just really trying to stick together, » said Valley. « I really have sympathy and empathy for what (my players) go through as college students because it’s just not normal. « . I couldn’t imagine being 18 or 22 and trying to go through college and not go through any of those things. ”

If anyone has practiced the art of patience, it’s Valley, the former UConn guard who has waited almost a season to claim her first head coaching win. The Hawks lost their first 27 games in 2019-20 before shocking America East favorite Stony Brook (70-67) in their regular season finale.

« We have a lot of really, really good pieces, » Valley said. « We’re going to surprise some people. We are in a really good room. We have a couple of kids who want to be here who are tough. ”

Valley, 39, is tough too. Coaching is a demanding appearance in a normal season, let alone in the middle of a pandemic. She stopped meeting face-to-face two months ago – aside from practicing, of course – and spent far too much time with Zoom.

She misses the human element of the profession, interacting with players off the field.

« I don’t like it at all, » she said of Zoom. “When you interact with other people, you can read people. When someone is having a bad day or is upset, emotionally they may not even feel anything on Zoom. When you’re in my office and we’re having a meeting, the door is closed and it’s just us. …

« It was incredibly emotionally and mentally demanding for (our players). It’s really hard to learn from a distance. With all of this, they really are warriors. I applaud their resilience and commitment. ”

The Hawks should open against UMass on December. 4, then visit Rhode Island on December. 6, but Valley had to cancel both games. Her players told her that they were not physically ready to compete.

« We became constipated one day at a time, » she said. « We try to keep things short, to keep things busy. ”

For the second year running, UConn’s Paige Bueckers has been named Big East Newcomer of the Week on Monday.

Bückers an average of 18. 3 points, 6. 3 templates, 5. 0 rebounds and shoots 59. 5 percent in the wins of the third-placed Huskies against Seton Hall, Creighton and Xavier.

In their first four games, the 5-foot-11 point guard averages 18. 0 points, 6. 0 templates and 2. 8 steals.

Hartford Hawks Women’s Basketball, Maine Black Bears Men’s Basketball, America East Conference, Basketball

World News – USA – Women’s Basketball Notebook: Hartford’s Morgan Valley is ready for the long wait
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