Following a tremendous run during the 2020-21 season, we provide an early glimpse into the 2021-22 Arizona Women’s Basketball season.
Well, the 2020-21 Arizona Women’s Basketball season is officially over, and with the Wildcats now beginning their long off-season, we take an early look at the state of the program as they head into next season.
Year five was by far the best season for the Wildcats under head coach Adia Barnes, but coming into 2021-22, the challenge will be on as Arizona hopes to best replicate their success this season. However, perhaps more importantly, Arizona will look to supplement the major loss in the departure of Aari McDonald.
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We all knew we would have to face this day sooner or later, but it is finally here as the Aari-less era of Arizona Basketball now begins for Adia and the Wildcats.
So, coming into next year, the Arizona Women’s Basketball team should still have plenty of talent to make a run to the NCAA Tournament, but who will be the key focal points?
For starters, during Arizona’s tribute at Arizona Stadium, Wildcat forward Sam Thomas announced she would be coming back for and fifth a final season in Tucson, thanks in large part to the extended eligibility provided by the Covid-19 pandemic.
She will most likely be the captain and leader of this team, and she will be a big part of the teams’ overall success. Having her back is huge for Arizona
Outside of Sam returning, Arizona will also have Cate Reese, Bendu Yeaney, Shaina Pellington, Lauren Ware, and Helena Pueyo most notably. Then they do add freshmen Madison Conner, who technically enrolled early and saw limited action this year, Anna Gret Asi from Estonia, and the prized commit in five-star big, Aaronette Vonleh.
The Wildcats do seemingly have the talent, it is just a matter of whether they live up to the hype and whether they can supplement the loss of production from Aari.
Already, the team ranks just outside the Top 25, but they do have the chance to surprise, and I’m sure the continuous doubting is only going to motivate this group.