By Tom Benoit
October 24, 2012 2:18 PM

photo courtesy of Siena Athletics

This year’s sophomore class is made up of four players who are all coming off a freshman year with different experiences, but each is looking forward to a renewed sense of purpose for the upcoming season.

Tehresa Coles is coming off a strong freshman season in which she played in all 29 games, starting in 22. An active defensive player, Coles finished the year with 55 steals. As she prepares for her sophomore season, it hasn’t taken long for her to make an impression on new Head Coach Ali Jaques.

“T Coles is definitely one of our most athletic players.” said Jaques. “She’s really embraced being the top of our match up and some of our defensive schemes. She’s really bought into that. I love her athleticism and I love how hard she goes and I love how she sets the tone for everybody else. She has a no-quit attitude and that’s a lot of fun to coach.”

Coles who averaged 4.6 points, 2.4 assists, and 1.9 rebounds per game is looking forward to building on the valuable experience she gained last season, one in which she showed tremendous growth as the year progressed.

“I think I learned that being confident in your game is a big part of it and you really just have to not second guess yourself. You have to really know and understand that your teammates and your coaches are all behind you to back you up and just really push you and make you the best player you can be. In the end we’re all just going to work together for a common goal.”

With a season under her belt, Coles talked of what she focused on after last year to improve her game.

“My ball handling is a big part of it and something I’ve been working on. Ball handling and getting up lots of shots. Making sure I was in the gym any fee time that I had. Really working on my handle and my shot and just the quickness of my game.”

The offseason was also one of adjustment for Coles and her teammates as they faced the change in coaching staff. But she explains that they took the opportunity to form a stronger bond.

“I think through the whole transition for the team we built a lot of team chemistry because you really just have to stick together. Making sure, like Coach Jaques said, to put the program above ourselves. We’ve just really got to realize that we have to move forward and in order to do anything big as a team we’ve just really got to be in It together.”

Coles feels that it will all pay dividends on the court.

“I feel like we have a lot that we’re going to accomplish this year. I feel like it’s going to be a big year for us. Coach Jaques, the whole coaching staff and everyone’s just been working really hard over the summer and the off season and so far in practices. I’m excited for everyone to see what we have to offer.”

As a former local high school standout at Colonie High, Coles has become one of the faces of the program, literally, appearing on local bill boards promoting the Saints. With that and all of the local media attention, she remains humble and is just enjoying the experience of playing for her hometown college.

“I love it because its nice having my friends and my family be able to come to games and to support the team. It feels good to be able to play here and represent the community that I’ve pretty much grown up in. It’s nice to be able to go from sitting on the sidelines when I was younger with my little travel ball team cheering “Go Siena” to actually be on the court and having travel teams cheer for us. It’s nice.

Kelsey Booth played in 23 games as a freshman averaging about 8 minutes per game. She averaged 2.3 points per game and 1.22 rebounds. She shot 41% from deep, making 11/27 3-point field goals for the season.

Coach Jaques had this to say of Booth.

“Kelsey’s our best shooter. She was on fire yesterday. We had a late practice last night. Kelsey probably thinks I pick on her at times but that’s only because I know how good she can be. I expect her to come in and bust up zones and knock down a lot of 3’s for us this year.”

Booth describes her freshman season and how she adapted to her role as the season progressed.

“I think it went pretty well. I think being a freshman you don’t really know what to expect. I completely switched up different positions. They recruited me to be a post player and I ended up being more of a 3. I started shooting a lot more and then became the defined shooter of the team which is not what I came in thinking would happen. I feel great about that. I like it a lot.

Booth dedicated herself in the off season preparing to expand her role on the team.

“I worked really hard in the off season. When we were home in the summer I was always at the gym because I knew Coach wanted us back in the best shape. I didn’t want to be the one who was not in the best shape so I worked really hard. Everybody is just so excited we’re all excited with the new coach, Coach Jaques. She’s just so great and everybody is just so happy and so ready to go.”

Ida Krogh missed most of last season, appearing in only 5 games due to plantar fasciitis, a painful foot condition. A native of Denmark, Krogh is one of the team’s most talented players and is hoping to be able to show what she can do on the court this season.

“I’m feeling so much better. I’m able to practice now and hopefully play in games. It was really frustrating but now I just look at it to take the best from that and learn from my experience back then and take it into my game now. I learned more about being a team mate and to see the team from different views and what can I do to help them.“

Krogh is looking forward to a new start with her health and moving forward under the new coaching staff.

“I feel like in the beginning it was really tough but the coaches have been really good talking to us, communicating with us all the time and right now it’s great. I don’t feel like we’ve got new coaches. I feel like I really know them and they know us.”

Coach Jaques loves the spirit and positive attitude that Krogh has displayed.

“I think the best story so far about Ida is: I was really intense one day in practice and really getting after these guys and she just had this big smile on her face and I was like Ida, what is so funny? She said I’m just happy coach. So I said keep staying happy. Keep playing with a lot of enthusiasm and it’s great to have you back on the court.”

Kim Lysius Cole is a 5-9 guard from Monteal, Quebec. Growing up in Canada, she began playing basketball in 6th grade. In coming to Siena she said playing college basketball in the US was a dream of hers. Although she missed all of last season due to injury, she is looking forward to getting back on the court to show what she is capable of. Coach Jaques sees a large upside to her game.

“I think Kim’s potential is boundless. I think Kim is only scratching the surface of how good she can be. She’s got a lot of dimensions to her game. I love the way she rebounds and Kim has a real quiet intensity about her that’s a lot of fun to coach.”

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