Samford’s men and womens’ basketball programs started playing games this past week. Samford men’s team is currently undefeated with a record of 3-0. The Bulldogs have won all three matches against: North Alabama 91-74, Jacksonville State 92-72 and Kennesaw State 74-60.
Several players contributed to their successes in the past few games, one being junior point guard Josh Sharkey who has two double-double performances with 22 points, 10 assists, and eight steals against the Gamecocks and 12 points and 10 assists against the Owls. Other players who contributed to the win against Jacksonville State were senior center Ruben Guerrero with 14 points, senior guard Brandon Austin with 13 points, and freshman forward Robert Allen with a career high of 11 points.
“It was a great outcome defensively,” graduate assistant Gerald Smith said. “We played great in both games and our ability to get out and score in transition is great. We can be a great team if we continue to stop teams and get out in transition.”
Smith formerly played for the Bulldogs, so he has had to go through the transition from player to coach.
“I try my best to give guys tips during the game on how the other teams are playing the ball or guarding them to give our guys an advantage,” Smith said. “As a coach, you can see some things that players can’t while they’re on the floor. So it’s my job to give them those tips they can’t see.”
They have also also taken the time to acknowledge what mistakes were made in the game to the past few games. Smith explained the importance of staying healthy and injury free for the season.
“If we stay healthy and hungry, there is no stopping us,” he said.
Senior center Ruben Guerrero expressed the importance of not staying complacent.
“We need to keep doing what we’re doing. If we keep playing good defense, the offense will follow,” Guerrero said.
Samford women’s’ team has also started into their season, at a record of 1-1. The Bulldogs lost in a match against University of Tennessee- Martin 68-89, but bounced back in a game against Rhodes College 54-71. Several players contributed to their first win of season, one being junior guard Paige Serup who scored a career-high 19 points and nine assists. This was Serup’s second straight game scoring a career high of points. Other contributors to the team’s success were junior guard Charity Brown who put up nine points, six rebounds and five assists and sophomore forwards Natalie Armstrong who scored 10 points in the game as well.
The team reflected on what attributes have been working in their favor in regard to the past few games.
They have also taken the time to acknowledge what mistakes were made in the game to capitalize on them in practice.
Samford women’s basketball takes on Presbyterian College in Pete Hanna Center on Sunday Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. after a five-game road trip. The men will go on the road to take on Cleveland State, Ohio State, and Purdue Fort Wayne next week.
[photo courtesy of Chase Cochran Photos]