Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Zips Set To Play In Postseason!!!

The 2009-2010 season has been a record bresking year for the Akron Women's Basketball Team. The Zips added yet another great accomplishment last night when they accepted a bid into the Women's Basketball Invitational (WBI). Akron received a 5 seed in the 16 team field and will play the 4th seed Wichita State on Thursday at 7:00pm.

The Zips will be making their first postseason appearance in 11 years Thursday and just their second all-time in the 36-year history as a team. This opportunity is a great experience for our team. The girls are very excited about the chance to continue their season in March. The WBI features a strong field of BCS conference schools, 20-game winners and solid mid-major programs, headlined by No. 1 seeds Memphis in the West and Appalachian State in the East as well as last year's National Runner Up, Louisville.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Coach of the Year!!!

Congrats to Coach Kest on being named MAC Coach of the Year! In just four seasons, Kest, has elevated the Akron program to unprecedented heights, culminating with this winter's record-setting campaign. UA set highs for overall wins (17), league wins (11) and home wins (11) in 2009-10 and is currently working on the best defensive season in school history. Akron held its opponents to an average of 59.1 points per game during the regular season, which is nearly five full points better than the current record and would also rank as the third-best, single-season mark in MAC history.

"What Jodi has been able to accomplish at Akron has been nothing short of amazing," said UA Director of Athletics Tom Wistrcill. "In a short time, she has transformed a program that had struggled mightily in the past into a championship-caliber team. And most importantly, she's done it the right way; with discipline, a commitment to defense and a sincere devotion to the success of her student-athletes on and off the court."


Congrats to Freshman Rachel Tecca who received the 6th Man of the Year Award from the MAC. Rachel has appeared in every game for the Zips as a true freshman and is second on the team in scoring (10.4) and rebounding (6.1) despite averaging just 22.5 minutes a game. The versatile post player is ranked highly among her peers in five categories, including scoring (24th), rebounding (11th), field goal percentage (13th; .441), offensive rebounds (12th; 2.45) and defensive rebounds (15th; 3.66).

"This is a great honor for Rachel and our team," Kest said. "Rachel has excelled in her role and has provided our team with great energy and effort on both ends of the floor. She could have easily started many games for us this year but her impact off the bench provided us with an instant spark. I feel very fortunate to have Rachel on our team. It is hard to believe that she is only a freshman and that her best basketball is still ahead of her."

Senior Night

Last week we honored our two seniors Ayla Guzzardo and Jolene Tamboue as they played their last game at the JAR. It was another great win for the Zips as we defeated the OU Bobcats 69-41. The win gave our team a first round bye in the upcoming MAC Tournament. It was also a historic night for Akron, as the Zips set school records for both overall wins and league wins. We finished with the best regular season in program history with a 17-12 overall mark and a 11-5 record in MAC play. Our seniors have done so much for our program and they had a great send off in their last game on the Akron floor. Jolene recorded her 6th double double of the year with 12 points and 14 rebounds while Ayla was all over the court posting 9 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 3 steals.

After the game we celebrated the win and our seniors with a reception in the Tommy Evans Lounge. It was great to honor the team's accomplishments and the individual success of both Ayla and Jolene. We are excited for the MAC tournament and we can't wait to make some noise in March. Let the Madness begin!!! Go Zips!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Ayla's Last Testimony

Senior Ayla Guzzardo will play her last game at the JAR tonight vs. OU. Ayla sat down and wrote some thoughts about her time here at the University of Akron.

I have only been at Akron for two years but I have really enjoyed my time in Ohio. Coming from Louisiana I really did not know what to expect. I came from a very successful junior college program, so coming to Akron was kind of scary, I knew that the program did not do well in the past but Coach Kest was so sure that we would be a winning program. So I committed to Akron in April and moved here in June. Ever since that June we have been working to get what we have today. Last year we did well but this year, I think we are surprising a lot of people. I know we have one last regular season game but I don’t think it’s over yet. We still have a lot of basketball to play. I don’t want to leave Akron, but since I don’t really have a choice I want to leave knowing that we changed the program around. I think we have changed it so far and broken many records but that’s not enough, we want more, we have worked too hard to just give up. I guess my last testimony that I would leave with Akron would be, “to remember that winning should become a habit, it should hurt to lose, but lose, learn from it, and forget it.”

- Ayla Guzzardo

Jolene's Last Words

As Senior Jolene Tamboue plays her last game at the JAR tonight vs. OU. Jo leaves us with some words of wisdom and some insight as to what the University of Akron has meant to her:

"Play every game like it's your last!" That has been my motto ever since I walked foot on the University of Akron campus. Choosing to come to Akron was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I have met a lot of great people and everybody at Akron has welcomed me with open arms. When choosing the school I wanted to come to, I wanted to go to a school that I could make a difference at. I also wanted to take that program to a new level. That is why I chose the University of Akron. I feel good leaving because I know that I have made an impact on this program. I would like to leave you with one of my favorite quotes... "Tomorrow is not promised so give everything you have today!"

- Jolene Tamboue

Alumni Weekend

This past weekend marked the inaugural alumni weekend for the University of Akron Women's Basketball Program. We kicked off the festivities with our first ever Alumni game on Friday evening. The game was a huge success as former players laced up their sneakers, reunited with former teammates and showed that they still have game. Current seniors Ayla Guzzardo and Jolene Tamboue tested the waters of coaching, serving as head coaches for each team. Coach Guzzardo had the pleasure of coaching the youngin's while Coach Tamboue went with the "more experienced" group. Age was not a factor in the game as both teams competed til the very end. The close battle came down to a few free throws and a defensive stop by the youngin's to prevail them to victory. As you can see in the pics, the former players had a blast. After the game the alums and current coaching staff got together at a dinner at Spaghetti Warehouse. It was great to hear all the stories from years past.

On Saturday the Zips took on Miami Ohio in a key MAC conference game. The alumni and their families were recognized at halftime of the game. It was a great day to be a Zip as the team picked up their 10th conference win beating the Redhawks 72-65. With the win the Zips have now tied school records for most conference wins and overall wins. With one more conference game against OU the 2009- 2010 Zips can make some new history of their own!

We want to thank our alumni who came out and made this weekend very special. We can't wait for next year!!! GO ZIPS!!