The Durham Lords women’s basketball team is off to a solid 6-2 start in Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) play – and sit in a tie for second in the East.
Their counterparts at Ontario Tech have started 0-9 in their first season in the Ontario University Athletics league.
But at least one member of the Lords thinks the Ontario Tech team is getting more publicity than Durham.
“Sometimes it’s a little bit annoying because we feel like they get more recognition than we do,” says Andrea Zulich, a first-year guard with the Lords, who played four years of university ball at Laurentian University in Sudbury.
Zulich says she wants the Lords to get more recognition on campus.
“It’s really cool that they have a basketball team, but, like, we’re outperforming them,” adds Zulich.
The Lords have started the season strongly, despite having limited experience.
Durham has five first year players on its 11 player roster. As a result, the team is looking to gain experience on the fly.
Given Marie Stasiuk is out for the year with a torn ACL, the Lords only have two returning players, says head coach Heather Lafontaine.
She says the team is trying to get as much game experience as possible to be ready for the OCAA playoffs.
“They work hard in practice and are a really good group it’s just taking that next step to close out games,” says Lafontaine.
She says despite having several new players the chemistry is really good and the players get along very well.
“It’s a great group of girls, it’s really refreshing to see a group like that,” says Lafontaine.
She has been in the coaching industry for 40 years. She hit the 100 career win milestone against Centennial. Her record with Durham is 101-90. She says she is fortunate to have had good teams at Durham.
“Nice to hit that milestone, a refection of all the players that have played at Durham the last few years,” says Lafontaine.
Zulich likes what she sees from the team so far this season.
“We’re doing really good so far but we want to improve on being more of team and making sure we share the ball,” says Zulich.
She is looking forward to get on the podium and get the Lords their first OCAA gold medal since 1996-1997.
“Our goal is to clinch a spot a playoff spot and go all in for the gold medal,” says Zulich.
The Lords are on a three-game winning streak and want to build off that momentum heading into the winter semester. The Lords play the Loyalist Lancers (3-5) at home Jan. 14.