Filling the void: YSU women looking to reload, not rebuild, as new season nears


The YSU women tipoff their season next Tuesday, looking to replace three key seniors

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Football season is in full swing but believe it or not, the Youngstown State Women’s Basketball season tips off in just over a week. The Penguins will look to fill the void left by three stellar seniors last season.

“Losing those three seniors is a big blow,” Head Coach John Barnes said Monday.

He said Sarah Cash, Melinda Trimmer and Alison Smolinski played a huge role in the program over their four years at YSU.

“It is going to be a challenge. I think we are in the process, trying to figure out who we are, team chemistry, lineups, who plays well together, all of those things and it doesn’t happen overnight.”

With those three gone, Barnes will rely on the three top returning scorers to fill the void in preseason all-conference first-team selection Mary Dunn, along with Chelsea Olson and McKenah Peters.

“Coach Barnes is definitely relying on us three to put up some numbers here and there,” said Peters, a junior guard. “I think that at least one of us can do that each night. It doesn’t matter who scores 20 a night or whatever, as long as we are producing points and getting the job done, getting wins.”

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“When Indiya left, there was a void on our team,” said Dunn, a senior. “I think that Al [Smolinski], Sarah [Cash] and Mel [Trimmer] did a great job stepping up, and saying that we didn’t need that and it was in the past and times do change. So I think we can do the same thing now and I think the younger players have recognized that just because we lost great players, doesn’t mean we don’t have great players still on the team.”

The YSU women will tipoff their season at Beeghly Center next Tuesday as they welcome Canisius to town to start off their 2019-2020 campaign.

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