UW-Rock welcomes former Parker trio
JANESVILLE Scott Lee is filthy from rolling in his recruiting-rich pay dirt.
Lee, the UW-Rock County men’s and women’s basketball coach, added three former Parker High School varsity players to his women’s recruiting class.
“It’s the first time ever that I’ve had girls that played varsity for Parker,” said Lee, who begins his sixth season at UW-Rock. “There have been girls that played on freshmen and sophomore teams, but not on the varsity.’’
Lee welcomed Kayce Chesebro, Julia Dement and Brianna Washington, who bring a combined 10 seasons of high school varsity experience to the Rattlers.
“They are all registered,” Lee said. “They are ready to go to school and play basketball.’’
Lee said his Parker recruits decided it was to their advantage to play and stay close to home.
Chesebro was headed to UW-Platteville to catch on with the Pioneers basketball program but decided staying home was the smarter play.
“I decided to stay home and get my generals,” said Chesebro, a 5-10 post player for two seasons on the Parker varsity. “I live three, four blocks away, and when I knew I could play basketball, I thought why not?”
Dement planned to play basketball for UW-Oshkosh and study nursing.
“I cannot not play basketball,” said Dement, a four-year Parker varsity player. Dement did an about-face.
“I can get a nursing degree at UW-Rock’s four-year nursing program,” Dement said. “I like the school, and going there is no problem.’’
Washington wanted to stay close to home. UW-Rock fit the bill, and the basketball program was a plus.
“I watched the games, and I liked it,” said Washington, who will major in social work and marriage counseling. “I want to stay close to home, and this fits.’’
Lee has never had more than nine women to start a season, and that number dwindles to as few as five after the first semester.
Despite the low numbers, UW-Rock women’s basketball has not lacked spirit or struggled for victories.
“While the men’s program holds the edge in numbers, when you put the men’s and women’s programs side–by-side, the women have the better winning percentage,” Lee said. “But as far as numbers, the women’s program has to definitely overcome that hurdle.’’
Despite finishing last season with just five players, after launching the season with seven, the UW-Rock women finished 14-12 overall and in third place out of 11 teams in the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference.
Academic suspensions have hurt the women’s program since Lee became coach.
“We’ve lost eight or nine players over the last three years after the first semester,’’ Lee said.
All three Parker recruits graduated with honors, and staying up on grades should not be a problem. Dealing with fewer players won’t be an obstacle, either.
Lee said with his three new recruits, the Rattlers have nine players, but the newcomers see that as a plus.
“It’s more than OK with me,” Dement said of playing with a smaller team. “That can be a benefit to play on a team with fewer players. You are going to get more effort and more playing time.’’