IHO writer Richard Kent caught up recently with Yale women’s basketball coach Allison Guth as she enters her fifth season helming the Bulldogs, who have registered winning campaigns each of the past three seasons. (Ivy League Digital Network)
Ivy Hoops Online: Tell us a bit about your freshmen and how much contribution you expect to get from them.
Allison Guth: Jenna Clark – point guard from Pittsburgh who is going to immediately impact us with her high basketball IQ and decision making. Jenna passes like Pistol Pete (Maravich) and can score in a variety of ways.
Klara Astrom – complete wing and scoring guard from California. Klara can score off the bounce with great strength and knock down from beyond the arc with a tactical stroke. She gives us more depth at the wing and will immediately impact us with her strong rebounding and defensive effort.
Ayla Elam – point forward from California who is an athletic, wiry forward. She is learning our system and working hard each day to improve fundamentally.
IHO: Talk about the Ivy from top to bottom this coming season.
AG: The Ivy is as strong as it’s ever been. The league keeps getting better and better and the parity shows the depth of talent.
IHO: Obviously, there was a change at the top at Princeton. What are your feelings and perceptions of new head coach Carla Berube?
Carla Berube is a fantastic coach and even better human. I have a tremendous amount of respect for her and know she will do great things at Princeton.
IHO: What do you deem to be the most challenging aspects of your out of conference schedule? (Editor’s note: Yale’s nonconference schedule feature four schools that made the 2019 NCAA Tournament: Quinnipiac, UCLA, Courtney Banghart-coached North Carolina and Mercer.)
We have the most challenging nonconference schedule of my tenure. We believe to be the best you have to play the best. With setting up our schedule the way we have, we are hoping to better prepare ourselves for the challenges we will face in Ivy play.
IHO: Do you expect on any level that your style of play will differ this year from that of 2018-19?
AG: I want our number one attribute to be unselfishness. Our style will be similar to last year. We have focused on being “shot makers,” and that starts with taking the great shot off the extra pass. We want to increase our assists and improve the way we value the possession. Offensively, we want to play with pace and space. Defensively, we want to force contested jumpers and rebound.