Simmons College of Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team playing for their first National Title
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Building champions from the ground up.
The Simmons College of Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team starts their journey to play for a National Title Thursday in Missouri in only their first full year as a program.
The team is led by a first year head coach, transfers and freshmen all looking to make history and build a culture at Simmons.
Simmons College of Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team is playing in it’s first NCCAA Tournament. Something that didn’t seem possible just a few years ago.
“They tried to have a program in 2016-2017 and I think they had about five young ladies in that particular point in time and so they never finished their full season,” Women’s Head Basketball Coach Daniel Price said.
Price is an AAU and skills performance coach and was asked by Simmons to take on the top job for their women’s team. He immediately made his expectations clear.
“I said that I wanted to win a national title,” Price said.
While he meant every word, he had to convince the right players to join in on his vision.
“We’re building a culture of excellence and I want our players to understand that they can do anything being at an HBCU school,” Price said. “So I want kids who are hungry and who want to get their education.”
Players like Zephaniah Gray and Andrea Seay.
Gray is a senior point guard transfer from a division 2 national championship program averaging 14 points and 4 assists per game and Seay is a freshman G/F from Georgia looking to make a splash away from home averaging 12 points and 5.5 assists per game.
Both players credit Coach Price for their decisions to shoot their shot at something new.
“A lot of other coaches focus on if you’re not scoring then you won’t play and he’s not that type of coach,” Seay said. “Also, he has a lot of energy too and he’s not just a dead coach or a coach that’s just all about the business. He is all about the business but he allows us to have our fun as well.”
Gray said she has known Coach Price for years and she’s thankful for the opportunity to play a new role and show her championship pedigree.
“Now I’m playing a different role on a different team,” Gray said. “(Winning a championship) It was very fun when I experienced it the first time so I really feel like I’d love for my other teammates to really experience it too because it is a different experience and not everyone gets to feel that.”
Coach Price said his 15-9 Lady Falcons team prides themselves on defense and force 22 turnovers a game to go along with their balanced scoring.
Consistency he expects to continue in Missouri.
“My expectations for us to go out and do what we’ve been doing. You know it’s no pressure on us, it’s our first year,” Price said. “There’s no pressure on us because we weren’t even expected to be in this position.”
When you ask his players about their chances, they don’t lack any confidence.
“Oh yes, we’re getting a ring,” Gray and Seay said. “Yeah we want the ring. They can expect the ring.”
The team now poised to be one of the few HBCU’s to win a national title and take their program’s trajectory to new heights.
“For us to bring a championship, the Mideast Region Championship to the school is great recognition for Simmons College,” Price said. “Winning a National Title would be more recognition from a national standup.”
Seay said she’s excited to see what the future holds for the team and hopes to be catalyst moving forward to make this a winning program.
The Lady Falcons are the 6th seed in the National Christian Collegiate Athletic Association and face 3rd see Ozark Christian. If you’d like to watch the game, you can do so here.
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