Hailing from Calabasas, Calif., Yale junior guard Roxy Barahman has emerged as one of the Ivy League’s most dynamic players this season, so far leading the conference in scoring, ranking second in minutes played and steals and placing among the top 10 in assists, assist-to-turnover ratio, rebounding and free-throw percentage. Yale is currently tied for second in Ivy standings at 4-2 in league play and with more overall wins (14) than any other Ivy besides Penn.
Ivy Hoops Online: Talk about last season and the impact of graduation losses.
Roxy Barahman: Last season was very memorable and I knew we had a lot of big shoes to fill for this season, with the three seniors, Jen (Berkowitz), Mary Ann (Santucci), and Tamara (Simpson) leaving. After winning the WBI, we now have the expectation that we can make it to the NCAA or WNIT tournaments, as we are a team that should be in postseason play.
IHO: Tell us about your freshmen and their impact thus far.
RB: They have certainly stepped up and filled new roles very well. With Camilla (Emsbo) jumping into the starting lineup, she has really helped us make up for Jen’s loss and also provides a large presence around the rim. It is comforting knowing you have the potential Ivy League Rookie of the Year on your team, as she is a big key to our success this year.
IHO: Talk a little about Gabby Nelson and her inspirational role as your team captain.
RB: She has been an amazing captain, as she understands the game and (coach) Allison Guth’s system very well. Both on and off the court she supports us, which is great having someone always on your side. She is the best teammate, which is not always the case with some captains.
IHO: What is it like attending Yale?
RB: It means a lot to me to have the opportunity to excel in both academics and athletics, especially at a (u)niversity like Yale. I really wanted to come to Yale because I knew it was the institution that would challenge me academically, take me to the next level athletically and guide me professionally for the rest of my life.
IHO: How about that epic win over Princeton last Friday night?
RB: We were certainly very eager to beat the reigning Ivy League Champions on their home court. We know we are one of the best teams in the Ivy League so we can play with anyone, anywhere. We shot the ball very confidently and definitely played the best we have all year as a team.
IHO: What has been the impact of having new assistant coaches (Danielle Brown, Emma Golen and Lashay Banks) on the staff?
RB: Yes, it has been quite the changeup. They all come from very different basketball backgrounds, but I think this has provided us with a new coaching perspective that has allowed us to all grow as individual basketball players.