Editor's Note: Coming off the program's first Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA Tournament, there is a lot of anticipation for the 2011-12 women's basketball season as well as the expectations it holds. Every Tuesday throughout the summer, Assistant Director of Athletics Communications Jill Wunrow will sit down with one player to talk about the expectations they have for themselves for the upcoming season and what fans can expect to see from them individually.
Junior, Lydia Bauer (Lake Zurich, Ill.),
You were voted the most improved player by your teammates last season. What kind of honor was that for you after being sidelined with your shoulder injury the first two games?
"It was a huge honor to be voted the most improved player by my teammates. The honor is a continuous reminder of how hard our team works to make everyone better so that we are ready when the season starts. My shoulder surgery was a minor setback that I faced at the beginning of the season. However, I was able to become a more knowledgeable player of the game sitting through many pick-up games and practices."
sister Audrey plays basketball at NAVY. How special was it for both of you to
make it into the NCAA Tournament this past season?
"It was a very unique and memorable tournament for both of us. I knew how special it was to have a sister playing in the NCAA tournament at the same time that the Green Bay Phoenix made it too. I knew she was happy for my team and I was happy for her team. I was able to watch her play in the Patriot League Championship and saw some of her first round action against DePaul while we were in Wichita, Kan. I am very grateful that we were both able to experience that during our college careers."
When you would play pick-up in the driveway
as kids, who would usually win you or Audrey?
"When we would play pick-up games it would usually include my father and my brother. My sister and I would be on the same team against my dad and brother. I never kept an accurate account of the wins and losses but I would have to take an educated guess that my sister and I won a majority of the games."
Several times Coach Bollant has commented on
your shot and how it is one of the best, if not the best looking shot he's ever
seen. What is your reaction when you hear that? Humbling?
"It is always humbling when I hear Coach talk about my shooting form. I have to give the credit for my shooting form to my parents. They taught me the fundamentals of the game at a very young age. I want to make sure that I get plenty of shots in this summer so that when the season rolls around I can hopefully back up Coach's statement on the floor."
What do you anticipate your role being during
the 2011-12 season?
"I anticipate my role will be to become a more vocal leader on the floor and to contribute more on defense and offense. Now that I am a junior and an upperclassman of the program with two years of experience under my belt, I need to be an example for the incoming freshman, making sure that they understand the system we run and what it means to wear a Green Bay jersey."
Personally, what are you working on during
the off-season to help this team during your junior campaign?
"During the off-season my goals are to become a consistent defensive player and an offensive threat. Another goal is to be well conditioned so I am not winded when practices start in the fall."
What can Phoenix fans expect from Lydia Bauer
"A more confident player on the floor, both of the defensive and offensive end."
It's hard for your parents to get to games
being in Illinois and your dad being a pastor and making it hard to get away.
How do your parents follow your play and how soon after the game do you hear
"My parents make it to as many home games as they can. For the games they are unable to attend my parents will watch most of the games online. They recently upgraded their internet service so that they have no buffering when watching either my team or my sister's team. They will also come to the closer conference games when we are on the road, such as UIC, Loyola, and Milwaukee. I am very grateful for the games they are able to see me play, and even when they're not watching from the stands I know they are cheering me on at home. As for postgame chats, my mom will always send me a text message congratulating the team on another successful game and every once in a while will add a word of advice from her coaching days."
You are a very talented artist and even
painted a portrait to be auctioned off for this year's golf outing. Where did
you pick up the hobby or talent? What's your favorite art "project"?
"I had previously taken art classes in eighth grade and during my freshman year of high school. This past semester of college I took two introductory level art classes for my minor in Design Art. I never really thought of myself as an artist but enjoyed making art projects. My freshman year of college, I would have craft nights with my roommates and teammates were we would paint on cheap canvases. From there, I started to make paintings for several teammates for their rooms and apartments.
My favorite art project is painting on a canvas. I'm not really good at painting actual objects, more abstract shapes and patterns. I never have a set vision of what I want it to end up looking like. I just start to paint and see how it turns out. I don't worry about messing up because I just add more paint until I like what I see. I set no expectations for what I want my artwork to look like because it is a fun hobby that I enjoy."
Other than basketball, what are you looking
forward to doing in your spare time during the summer or what have you been
doing to keep busy this summer?
"Other than basketball, I am working at Northbrook Country Club and taking online summer classes. I try to get outside on nice sunny days and spend time with teammates on the weekends. I am looking forward to August when Celeste and Coach [Amanda] Leonhard will be getting married."