The Texas Wesleyan’s men and women’s basketball teams have wrapped up their 2014-2015 seasons.
The Lady Rams finished with a 16-16 record, including a major upset win on Jan. 10, when they beat Oklahoma Baptist University, at the time ranked No. 5 in the country, 77-59. The season ended on March 5, with a 78-64 loss to Oklahoma Baptist in the second round of the Sooner Athletic Conference tournament.
It was the fourth year in a row that the Lady Rams did not advance past the second round of the SAC or the Red River Athletic Conference tournament.
Still, the players have fond memories of the season.
“My favorite moment had to have been against Southwestern Assemblies of God, we had just lost Stacey to injury, and Oni wasn’t playing, so we were down two of our post players and our leaders,” said senior guard Amy Easley. “But I scored the game winning layup, so that was pretty exciting for me.”
Senior guard Stacey Darnley said her favorite moment was the win against Oklahoma Baptist because “I just felt like we all played together as a team.”
The men’s team finished the season with a 15-15 record, and got off to the second best start in school history with a 12-0 record that had them ranked No.12 in Division I NAIA. They had exciting finishes in conference play, such as when junior guard Demarcus Richardson had the game-winning layup as time expired to beat St. Gregory’s University 83-82 on Feb. 12.
Junior forward Sam Akano said that the team’s 12-0 start, the men’s best start since 1940 was one of the highlights of the season.
“For me personally the 12-0 start was a highlight of the season,” Akano said. “Everybody was happy, and you could see them out there enjoying the games.”
Head coach Brennan Shingleton echoed what Akano said, but added that he was happy to see growth out of his players.
“I was happy to see guys figure it out towards the end of the year,” Shingleton said. “It didn’t necessarily equate to a great record, but it did equate to progress which is what this is all about.”
Senior forward Mario Monroe liked the fight that the team had this season, pointing to one game in particular as a fond memory.
“We were on the road against Mid-America,” Monroe said. “We were down by 25 in the first half, and the game was pretty much over, but we came back and took the lead and while we still lost by a couple points that was a fond moment for me from this year.”
Franey said he is going to miss the way his seniors really led the team this year, playing every game hard and playing hurt or sick. He loves the team’s positive attitude and said they were great kids.
Franey faces a challenge replacing the eight graduating seniors, but is pretty excited for next season.
“We got some kids coming in that we think will be pretty good.” Franey said. “We also have a lot of underclassmen coming back who spent time watching this year because of all the veterans we had, so this will be their time to shine.”
Men’s head coach Brennan Shingleton only loses a few seniors from this year’s team, but is pretty excited for what he has coming back and recruits that are coming in.
“We have a tremendous, foundation already set and ready to build off of,” Shingleton said. “We have a frame of the house, we just have to put the doors, the windows and the lighting and these guys we have coming in, we just have to integrate them, instead of having to teach them everything.”