The Big East announced that women’s basketball will be played in a tournament-style start in 2021 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.
Senior Desiree Elmore said she is more than excited to get back to playing, especially because this arena is where she spent her high school years playing basketball. Elmore is facing new responsibilities as a leader this season but said she has no doubt the team will succeed as long as they work together.
Photo SHU Athletics
In her own right, Elmore has taken to self-reflection much more this season. As one of two seniors on the team, she said she often thinks about her interactions with the senior players during her first year at Seton Hall. The moments she takes to reflect remind her about some of the things she wished upperclassmen would have helped her.
“I remember my freshman year and the seniors sometimes getting upset with me if I didn’t understand a concept,” Elmore said. “Now that I’m a senior, it reminds me to be patient with them. I’m a very passionate player, there’s no hiding that and I want the best for everybody. I want to win a championship and we need everybody to do that.”
As Elmore and senior co-captain Jasmine Smith get ready for the upcoming season, it’s important that they’re on the same page and the team can count on them to play a titular role in this program.
Those concepts of patience and comradery that Elmore wants to see in the team this year are even more important considering the six new faces entering the squad this year. Four freshmen and two transfers were added to the Pirates’ roster as they attempted to prepare for however this season would turn out given the concerns with COVID-19.
“One thing that I’ve seen in practice is that each day, another concept is understood more,” Elmore said. “We’re all working hard to come together, and it helps because we have returning players who already know the system and what the coaches expect. Then you have freshmen and transfers coming in who are trying to learn this new system.
Photo by Jillian Cancela
“It gets hard sometimes, nobody’s perfect and we’re still early in the season, but there is always at least one thing I can take away from practice that we got better at that day,” She said. “Everybody is showing that they want to work hard which makes me even more excited for the season.”
If the smile on Elmore’s face couldn’t say it enough, she is more than ready to get back on the court in 2021 where she used to play high school basketball. However, there’s always that hesitation on whether it’s time to start the season with coronavirus concerns.
“It’s my last run and I plan to give it all I got,” Elmore said. “I’ve been waiting for this. I can’t wait to play in front of my family, and I was lucky enough to play at the Mohegan Sun arena all four years in high school, so it feels like home for me.”
Elmore’s return home is still a few months out, but the announcement of college basketball returning on Nov. 25 came as a huge boost to both her and the team’s overall morale. Coaches across all Big East basketball program—including coach Anthony Bozzella—have been working to bring some semblance of a season together, and that effort will hopefully pay off in one final season for Elmore in a Seton Hall jersey.Jenna Powell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Find her on Twitter @jennap0well.