Freshman guard thrown into starting lineup

Women's Basketball Head Coach Tiara Malcom speaks with guard TaMiracle Taylor (10) in the second half as the FIU Golden Panthers defeated the Florida Atlantic University Owls, 86-65, on February 17, 2018, at the Ocean Bank Convocation Center in Miami, Florida. (Photo courtesy of FIU Athletics)

By Cristhian Plasencia

 

Women’s basketball freshman guard broke into the starting lineup after head coach Tiara Malcom was forced to shift personnel.

Freshman TaMiracle Taylor, out of Fort Lauderdale High School, started at the shooting guard position in the last three games, due to Alexis Gordon’s absence.

“We had some things going on internally within the team. For certain reasons or another, some players are not playing,” said Coach Tiara Malcom. “It’s a program standard, we have to hold everyone to the same standard. So now someone else has to step up to the plate.”

Without Gordon, FIU struggled offensively this past month, but Taylor was able to help the team. She averaged 9.7 points a game as a starter and played an important role during the Panthers victory against Florida Atlantic University back on Feb. 17, when she registered 11 points and five defensive rebounds.

Malcom confesses that she has yet to find the right combination in her team. With six freshmen coming in during the summer, Malcom confesses she has yet to find the right combination in her team.

Forward Shante Walker was one of those freshmen that Malcom confided in during key moments of the season. Walker’s played 25 minutes, shot 5-for-9 and registered 12 points during the season opener against the University of Miami.

The Canes found it difficult to stop Walker’s style of play, astonishing Miami’s Hall of Fame coach Katie Meier. Meier said Walker’s performance broke down the Canes’ defensive schemes and rotations.

“Walker has the ability to do more in what you’re seeing. She had to work herself into the pace of playing at the college level she’s still trying to work her way into that,” said Malcom. “At the high school, Walker dominated because of her size and because of how skilled she is.”

At home against Charleston Southern back in Nov. 26, Walker picked up her first double-double, with 13 points and 11 rebounds. She scored a season-high 20 points against Georgetown on Nov. 29, shooting 63 percent from the field.

For assistant coach Keunta Miles, Walker’s first instinct is scoring, but she wants to shift the mindset of her forwards to rebounding.

“The players are very comfortable with each other,” said Miles. “So when the post players are not doing what they are supposed to, the guards feel comfortable with telling the post players to rebound more and vice versa.”

Despite losing seniors Kiandre’a Pound and Quira Demery, the women’s basketball team looks to solidify itself in Conference USA with this year’s up and coming freshmen.

Women’s basketball freshman guard broke into the starting lineup after head coach Tiara Malcom was forced to shift personnel.

Freshman TaMiracle Taylor, out of Fort Lauderdale High School, started at the shooting guard position in the last three games, due to Alexis Gordon’s absence.

“We had some things going on internally within the team. For certain reasons or another, some players are not playing,” said Coach Tiara Malcom. “It’s a program standard, we have to hold everyone to the same standard. So now someone else has to step up to the plate.”

Without Gordon, FIU struggled offensively this past month, but Taylor was able to help the team. She averaged 9.7 points a game as a starter and played an important role during the Panthers victory against Florida Atlantic University back on Feb. 17, when she registered 11 points and five defensive rebounds.

Malcom confesses that she has yet to find the right combination in her team. With six freshmen coming in during the summer, Malcom confesses she has yet to find the right combination in her team.

Forward Shante Walker was one of those freshmen that Malcom confided in during key moments of the season. Walker’s played 25 minutes, shot 5-for-9 and registered 12 points during the season opener against the University of Miami.

The Canes found it difficult to stop Walker’s style of play, astonishing Miami’s Hall of Fame coach Katie Meier. Meier said Walker’s performance broke down the Canes’ defensive schemes and rotations.

“Walker has the ability to do more in what you’re seeing. She had to work herself into the pace of playing at the college level she’s still trying to work her way into that,” said Malcom. “At the high school, Walker dominated because of her size and because of how skilled she is.”

At home against Charleston Southern back in Nov. 26, Walker picked up her first double-double, with 13 points and 11 rebounds. She scored a season-high 20 points against Georgetown on Nov. 29, shooting 63 percent from the field.

For assistant coach Keunta Miles, Walker’s first instinct is scoring, but she wants to shift the mindset of her forwards to rebounding.

“The players are very comfortable with each other,” said Miles. “So when the post players are not doing what they are supposed to, the guards feel comfortable with telling the post players to rebound more and vice versa.”

Despite losing seniors Kiandre’a Pound and Quira Demery, the women’s basketball team looks to solidify itself in Conference USA with this year’s up and coming freshmen.