For the Waynesburg University women’s basketball team, this season hasn’t turned out how they were hoping. The team is just 4-14, and 3-6 in conference play as of print. Through all the ups and downs, one thing has remained consistent: the stellar play of sophomore center Brooke Fuller.
Fuller is putting up strong numbers, averaging about 15 points and 7.5 rebounds per game, leading the team in both categories. Where Fuller has really impressed her team and coaches though, is her improvement in the post.
Fuller’s development hasn’t come without hard work. If you ask her, or anyone who knows how hard she’s worked to improve, they’ll acknowledge her commitment to improving her strength.
“Coach [Sam] Jones gave us a workout packet for over the summer, and I really bought into it,” Fuller said. “I started the summer with lighter weights, but by the end of the summer I was benching and lifting a lot more than I used to be able to do.”
Jones agreed that Fuller needed to add strength over the summer to raise her play in the winter.
“One of the things that held her back was she just wasn’t as strong,” Jones said. “That’s partly because people were just older and knew more of what to do.”
Her strength has helped a lot in the rebounding game. Fuller noted that her ability to box out the opponent she is up against has improved drastically.
Another reason she has improved is the addition of Matt Pioch to the coaching staff. Pioch started his career last January as a volunteer assistant. His greatest strength is his experience playing in the post. He has used that experience to teach Fuller how to improve her own game.
Pioch mentioned that his favorite part of working with Fuller is how much she wants to learn.
“Working with Brooke, she’s absolutely great because she’s a sponge. She learns things so quickly,” Pioch said.
This season, Fuller feels comfortable asking questions.
“This year, I just ask questions whenever I get confused,” she said. “Last year, I just did what the coaches said, but I never asked why. This year I’ve just been trying to understand why I’m doing things.”
Jones mentioned Waynesburg’s history of stellar post players, listing players like Addy Knetzer, Courtney Sargent, and Paige Pearce when talking about Fuller’s future.
With more hard work on and off the court, Pioch believes she could reach the caliber of those players.
“She is on pace to be a 1,000-point scorer,” Pioch said. “I really think she can end up averaging a double double for the entirety of a season.”