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New signees make Co-Lin Lady Wolves athletic, quicker

WESSON – Look for the Copiah-Lincoln Community College women’sbasketball team to be smaller but quicker and more athletic for the2002-03 campaign. Co-Lin women’s coach Gwyn Young has signed sixstandout high school stars for the upcoming season.

The signees include 5-11 forward Lauren Williams of Mendenhall,5-10 forward Victoria Richardson of Hazlehurst, 5-9 guard WandaCalvin of Vicksburg Warren Central, 5-9 Loretta Martin of Bonnabelin Kenner, La., 5-6 guard Leslie Christmas of Jackson Provine and5-8 guard Natasha Funchess of Magee.

“I think we have some pretty good talent in the group,” saidCoach Young who will launch his 27th campaign at Co-Lin this fall.”Overall, they are pretty athletic.”

Young said his next edition would be a contrast from the teamthat won The NJCAA Region 23 Tournament and advanced to thenational tourney in Salina, Kan.

“Next year will be a different kind of team,” said Young. “Wewere more power on the inside last season. This time we will havemore quickness.”

Young said Richardson and Williams will start out playinginside. “Victoria could play a three for us.

“Christmas could play either the one or two spot for us,” Youngcontinued. “Funchess will also work at one or two. Calvin is atwo-three type player. Martin is a three-four type player.”

Williams averaged 10.1 points and 12 rebounds per game for theMendenhall Lady Tigers. Calvin averaged 15.1 points and 5.7rebounds per game. Richardson, named to The Daily Leader’s All-AreaGirls Basketball Team, averaged 17.6 points and 9 rebounds pergame.

Martin averaged 20 points and 12 rebounds per game. Christmas (8ppg, 3 rpg) and Funchess (17 ppg, 8 rpg) were standouts on theirhigh school teams.

Young said he may sign a few more players.

Co-Lin graduated two strong, starting post players in MindyLivaudais and Christy Brown and top reserve Laurie Ann Davis. Healso lost guards Alexya Irvin and Gwen Smith.

Tiania Burns, a guard from Nashville, Tenn. returns. She was theteam’s leading scorer, averaging 22.7 points per game. Burns madethe NJCAA First Team All-America Basketball Team.

Amye Beeson, Sherkiya Herried and Roberta Johnson at guard alsoreturn. Returning at forward are Lindsay Altman and Nikki Blakely,a starter and a top reserve respectively. Post players back areShaquita Smith and Hope Mason who played in a reserve role lastseason.

Livaudais and Brown, the second and third leading scorers on theteam, have both signed with the University of Louisiana-Monroe.Davis is expected to sign with Mississippi College.