The bond growing between the women’s basketball players is translating success on the court.
Senior guard and team captain Shelby Shipley believes this year’s team is a mix of different personalities – but they know how to work together.
“This year the team chemistry is great,” Shipley said. “Everybody is close and we all hang out together.”
Shipley said the teammates observed the other players’ personalities and learned how to motivate each other.
“With some players you can get in their face and grab their jersey,” Shipley said. “With other players you have to be more sensitive. That’s where hanging out off the court is good, you get to know their personalities and how they respond to different situations.”
The 110-percent mentality on the court coupled with the sisterhood dynamic off the court has made this year’s team shine.
Paige Parliament, the team’s youngest player, does not seem affected from being the young gun.
“At first it was difficult to come onto the team but now I just laugh everything off,” Parliament said. “The girls will laugh at me because I’m crazy and always having a good time but on the court, I’m a player. I work hard all the time.”
Shipley said she thought the teams hard work has paid off.
“A majority of our team is used to playing together and we’ve got the freshmen who have come in and play like they’ve always been there” She said. “Our team has great chemistry with all of them, especially Paige. She’s got better hands than almost anybody on our team.”
Parliament’s journey to ACU led her through a number of different schools, but this 6-foot-1 center was born to be a Wildcat.
“The recruiting process is so stressful and emotional with all the emails and calls, talking to coaches — but the ACU campus sold itself,” Parliament said. “The coaches, the girls on the team. Everyone was so friendly and just had a great time and I loved that.”
Parliament said she really wanted to win the conference this year.
“We’ve got to take it one conference game at a time, but it would be great if we could win conference or hopefully even make it to the National Tournament,” she said.