This is the first of our “Meet the Jays” segments featuring a few of the 2009-2010 Creighton Bluejays women’s basketball. Check White & Blue Review during the next few days as we profile some of Jim Flanery’s top players.
In a matter of seconds, the Creighton women’s basketball team missed out on its first trip to the NCAA Tournament since the 2001-02 season and its first time in Jim Flanery’s tenure as head coach. Kelsey Woodard keeps that experience in the back of her mind, and she is pretty excited to get back on the court and erase the painful memory:
“We are really excited to get started. A lot of us have been playing for years and we have been playing against each other all summer, so we are ready to start playing other people and get out there and see what we can do.”
Woodard has a lot to be excited about. Last season, the sharpshooter led the conference with 88 three-pointers (including a 7-12 performance from behind the arc against Indiana State last January). She is a fixture in Flan’s starting lineup, averaging almost 38 minutes per game as a sophomore. Woodard is currently 7th on the school’s all-time 3-point field goals made and 3-point percentage lists; lists she’ll certainly climb during the next two seasons.
These are the types of shooting statistics Bluejays fans were excited about when Kelsey gave Creighton her commitment early in her high school career. She comes from one of the First Families of Hoops in Omaha: her father, Doug, is the head coach of Bellevue West High School’s boy team, and her sister Kristi played for Creighton and served as a graduate assistant from 2006-2009. Bluejays fans were happy to welcome her to the Hilltop, and Woodard was excited to call Creighton and the new Sokol Arena home.
“I committed pretty young. I committed after my freshman year in high school and my sister went here. There had always been talk about a new facility but never talk about plans for one, so it is pretty awesome to actually have that here.”
Woodard looks to improve on her skills driving toward the basket this season, while still maintaining her deft outside shot. She’ll have plenty of tough competition against which to get better, though, especially in the challenging non-conference slate the program put together. But Kelsey and her teammates welcome the test.
“Playing tougher teams, it is easier to get up for those game and we really respect the decision to play these types of games. It helps us and prepares us to get ready for conference, so we like it. We get excited about it and it lets us play some great competition.”
Watch for Woodard to have a great season for the Bluejays, and watch the women’s basketball team in action next week — their first and only exhibition game is Thursday, November 5 against Nebraska-Omaha.