The Northern Oklahoma College Lady Mavs open the 2018-19 season Friday night at the Allen Classic in Iola, Kansas.
The Lady Mavs are under the tutelage of longtime coach Greg Krause who is in his 37th season at NOC.
Krause is excited for the 2018-19 season.
"I'm looking forward to the season," Krause said. "We start in August trying to build to this point and now it's here."
Overall, Krause likes what he sees in his Lady Mavs.
"We have really good team speed and quickness," he said. "We have good perimeter shooting and we have depth at all positions. We have good chemistry, this group has worked really hard and they understand the team concept. I'm very encouraged."
NOC has suffered an early season ending injury as sophomore guard Chideyah Guyton from DeSoto, Texas has an injured knee and will miss the season.
"I hate it for Shey (Guyton)," Krause said. "She has worked really hard, it's a shame. She provides that glue for our team, she does all the intangibles that teams need to be successful."
Krause believes he can play 10 players this year, a far cry from last year when the Lady Mavs only had nine healthy bodies.
"Last year, we had too many players that were forced to play heavy minutes," he said. "Now, we have the depth to be fresher at the end of games. I believe it will make a big difference."
Bennell (12.2 ppg, 5.6 apg) started at point guard in 2017-18 and will play both guard spots this season. Guard Abi Webster and forward Tatiana Jones also saw time as freshmen last season. Sophomores Bailey White and Taylar Watkins are also in the mix for the Lady Mavs in 2018-19.
Krause is assisted by Carey Phariss.
The Lady Mavs were 13-16 last season.