STORY BY MATT SIMON
After being named interim head coach in May, Ollie Brent is leading the first year of a transition period for the Long Beach City College women’s basketball team.
The Vikings’ entire 14-player roster is in its first season at LBCC and only two are sophomores. With a young squad, LBCC will be in a trial and error stage early in the season as they rotate everybody in to get a feel for the college game and look for the best lineups.
“It’s really important,” Brent said of having a deep rotation early in the season. “We only have two sophomores. The freshman really have to come in and learn the system fast.”
Freshman Donavion Huskey from Tustin has led the offense early on averaging 17 points while sophomore Isabel Lizarraga (Whitman College) and freshman Ivori Scott average 14 and 10 points respectively. Freshman Makuaenalahni Salevao (LB Poly) will also be a big piece of the Vikings (2-1) rotation.
“Those four are the backbone of our team,” Brent said. “What I like about the three freshman is that they’re poised. They’re a little bit more seasoned with age. For a 19-year-old, 18 year old I expect some immaturity, but they’ve been more poised and more mature during their freshman year.”
Brent said the team hasn’t quite found its identity offensively but is looking forward to figuring it out when the team competes Kiwanis Tournament in Ventura this weekend.
“That’s one area we don’t thrive in yet,” Brent said. “In our offensive set we struggle to score, we’re good when we’re running. We’re good when we’re applying pressure on the defensive end. But once we get into our sets, we haven’t been able to put it together in our three games. So we just need to learn the plays and try and execute them better.”