Editor's Note: Back by popular demand. Coming off another historic season which featured the program's record-14th consecutive regular season Horizon League championship, as always there is a lot of anticipation for the next season in Green Bay women's basketball. Every Thursday 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. This week we begin SummerTimeOut with one of the team's five seniors, Adrian Ritchie.
Senior, Adrian Ritchie (De Pere, Wis.), 5'11", G
Can you believe your senior year is here?! What have your emotions been as you are back to lifting with the team and playing pick-up on a weekly basis?
"It's definitely different. In the back of your mind you are always preparing for it from the second you get here and you pay attention to how the seniors lead and now that I'm in that spot all those thoughts come back to me. I can still picture past players and what they did and think of how I would lead. Traditions are passed on and now it's our turn. As a senior, I'm excited for the opportunity and looking forward to leading this team."
The Green Bay tradition and the success of the program is often talked about and how its values are handed down from generation to generation; is that why this program is so successful from your perspective and how do you continue those winning traditions?
"It's hard to explain how that transition happens. No one ever sits us down and says this is how you should lead and this is how you be a senior but it's just done by example. It started back when Carol was here and when someone did something to get people to follow them. Coach Borseth talks about past players and how they led so it's great to have him back here, know where it started and where it can go. When I was a freshman there was no senior class but we learned from Kayla, Celeste and Morgan, and it was exciting to hear what they would have to say. I think the reason we're so successful is because everyone takes our program so seriously and doesn't take leadership lightly."
You'll tip off your senior campaign with a new head coach yet, a familiar face to Green Bay basketball and the area being a De Pere native, what is your biggest wonder with coach Borseth?
"Since I always have watched him I have always seen his enthusiasm as an outsider but now I get to experience what it's like to be inside the huddle with him. I've seen so many players be coached by him and admire him so I'm looking forward to being one of those players he's coached and be able to share a little piece of history. I'm just so excited to have an opportunity and season with him."
What are you most looking forward to this season?
"I'm looking forward to surprising people. In the beginning of the season we always hear 'you don't have....so what are you going to do?' so that's always a good challenge. Some players have already claimed their identity this summer and that's good to see so I'm looking forward to my teammates stepping into their roles and having a new coach. I think we're in for a really exciting year."
You were a Second Team All-League selection last season and moved into fifth on Green Bay's individual career record list with 349 three-point field goal attempts and seventh with 125 three-point field goals made. What are your goals this season?
"Statistically I don't have any goals as the numbers are just an added bonus just to see you move up on a list in a program with such rich tradition. For me, this year is going to be about leading the team the right way and making sure I give everything I possibly can. I'm catching myself already saying 'I'm starting my last...' It's now or never. When a week goes by I want to make sure I put in everything and make sure a week doesn't go by where I didn't give enough. I want to make sure I give everything I can to this program and make sure I take advantage of every opportunity Coach Borseth gives me. I'm excited to do whatever we can to make the most out of my final season."
What have you been working on the most to improve your game for the 2012-13 season?
"As a team, Coach Borseth wants us to put up a lot of shots so for me that's what I've been working on. One thing that's a little different is how we're shooting; my goal is to come off ball screens a little better because of our offense. In the past we shot more layups and three pointers but now we're going to be a middle-range team, which is exciting for me because it's what we did in high school. I'm looking forward to being more versatile and not such a predictable player."
Statistically speaking, you had the best season of your career last year, averaging 12.3 points per game. Entering your senior year, you stand 96 points shy of 1,000 career points and with your career average of 9.3 points per contest you should reach the career milestone towards the end of nonconference play. What will it mean to you when you score that 1,000th point and do you hope it comes from a three-pointer?
"It's been neat to see Kayla, Celeste and Julie reach 1,000 points since I've been here and the work they've put in to reach that milestone. I never reached 1,000 points in high school so it will be pretty special to do in college. When I was a sophomore on the varsity team in high school we had a lot of good seniors so my job was just to pass them the ball so I really didn't have to score much. It's always been a goal of mine so it will be pretty cool when it does happen. I'm not sure I care if it's a three pointer or not. I definitely like to make threes but I also like to be considered more than just a three point shooter."
What can Phoenix fans expect to see fromthis season?
"Fans can expect me being me but a more confident version, a player who knows her team needs her. I've always liked pressure before but feeling needed and counted on through leadership is something I'm going to hold very close to my heart and make sure I can give everything to this team. I don't want to have any regrets."
What do you think is the biggest area regarding your game in need of improvement?
"One of the things I need to do is improve my consistency and do more midrange shooting. I want to be a player that's hard to predict and be someone that can do whatever the defense gives. Guarding Megan Lukan has been fun because she's really tough so I think to be able to guard her, I'll be prepared to guard anyone else. I'm looking forward to combining all the little things of my game into one aspect and be a more consistent and dominant player."
Should you have any free time during the summer months, what do you typically spend your day doing?
"Last summer I had a full-time job so this summer it actually feels like summer vacation, which is really nice. I'm taking two classes right now so those keep me somewhat occupied. I also just moved into my new place so getting reorganized and settling into my new place has been fun. Other than that I'm just hanging out and enjoying my family time as both of my sisters are home now."
Favorite ice cream or summer treat and why?
"I really just like a chocolate malt; it's simple and not something I have in the winter. I also like to head to the Fox River Trail and bike and rollerblade because it's obviously something that can't be done in the winter."