Weekly Feature

2013-12-04 / Sports

Angel brings wealth of experience to Sweet Home girls hoops

by PATRICK J. NAGY Reporter

One of Western New York’s all-time greatest basketball players is Sweet Home’s new girls hoops coach.

Yvette Angel, an All-American guard for Sacred Heart Academy and Ohio State University, is excited about taking over the reigns at Sweet Home.

“Growing up in Buffalo, I had friends at Sweet Home and I remember the tradition and competitiveness there,” said Angel, a Class of 1999 Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame inductee. “When the position opened up, I thought it was a good opportunity for me to coach... I’m excited about the program. The kids have been working extremely hard.”

Its Angel’s first coaching stint in Buffalo, although she has a lengthy coaching resume. She coached high school basketball in California, leading Bishop Montgomery to two state titles in three years.

She also was an assistant coach at Notre Dame University and was a member of the WNBA’s Sacramento Monarchs, playing one season and serving as an assistant coach for a year. She served as Sacred Heart’s Athletic Director last year.

Angel’s coaching philosophy is pretty simple. She wants the students to be good in the classroom, be tenacious and aggressive on offense and defense and respect their opponent. She said the players have been receptive to everything she has instilled.

Angel does not have set starters as of press time, but she mentioned seniors Val Odom (5-5 point guard), Jennifer Schwab (6-0 forward) and Harriet Hernandez (5-6 guard/forward) and juniors Savannah Walker (5-7 power forward), Lexi Odom (5-9 power forward) and Alissa Virges (5-1 guard) and sophomore Amanda Gentzke (5-5 guard) as players who are expected to contribute.

Val Odom is the team’s returning scorer. Hernandez is a returning ECIC II Second Team All-Star.

Angel is hoping there is strong leadership from the upperclassmen to lead the team.

Other players on the team are senior Marissa Edwards, junior Lindsey DiNatale and sophomores Cydney Adams and Shaniyah Crump.

Angel has liked the players’ work ethic in preseason scrimmages.

“We’re going to be aggressive and press, attack and run the fastbreak but the work ethic has been especially strong,” she said.

Sweet Home hosts Kenmore East in its season opener at 6:30 p.m. Friday.

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