Islanders women look to build after first conference title

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi women's basketball team
Posted at 6:49 AM, Nov 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-24 07:49:37-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The college basketball season has arrived for Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

The Islanders men and women will open the season in a doubleheader Wednesday night at the American Bank Center.

Here’s a report on the women’s team.

The Islanders are coming off their most memorable season ever after winning their first regular season conference championship.

But as the ladies prepare for their season opener against Texas A&M International, this team has a new look.

Eight seniors are gone with only one starter returning. But strong recent recruiting classes are expected to help fill in the needs

"We lost 90 percent of our scoring and 80 percent of our rebounding,” Texas A&M-Corpus Christi women’s basketball coach Royce Chadwick said. “But these young players are very excited about their opportunities to step up and show what they can do.”

Expect to see a lot of former Flour Bluff standout Hayle Campbell, who played in 28 games as a freshman last season. She has a great knack of always finding an open teammate.

"For me personally, I just want to have a good season, enjoy it and make it last,” Campbell said. “And like you said, it being my sophomore season I feel like I am a little more knowledgeable about the Division I athletes in our conference.”

And speaking of Division I athletes, Makinna Serrata made the huge transition from a Class A high school basketball at Tilden to the Division I college game two years ago. Now, she is being rewarded for her great play after earning a starting role at small forward.

"Obviously, (Class A) is a lot slower than Division I, so that was a transition and having a shot clock was the biggest change for me,” Serrata said. “The incoming freshman that we have are really good and talented. We are finally meshing together and I look forward to playing with them.”

It all starts Thanksgiving Eve at the American Bank Center. The women will play at 5 p.m. and the men will follow at 7 p.m.