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– Women’s CMCC team chases new national title in Virginia

Central Maine Community College women’s basketball team. Darren Slower / Sun Journal

Auburn – Emily Strachan and teammate Elisa Brault have acknowledged that the Central Maine Community College women’s basketball team is young and inexperienced this season.

But the Mustang was able to combine a winning season and is now on the hunt for another national title.

Emily Strachan, left and Elisa Brolt of Maine Community College women’s basketball team. Darren Slower / Sun Journal

The runner-up CMCC travels to Richmond, Virginia to participate in the USCAA Women’s Division II Basketball Tournament on Tuesday night at 8 p.m. The University of Maine in Augusta is ranked seventh and tenth under State Feud.

Strachan from Louiston makes his first trip to the Nationals, but when the CMCC finished second in 2020, Brolt, the only player to return from the team, joined in a big dance.

It’s very exciting, “Strachan said.” I mean, we only have one income, we’re all new, so it’s a great achievement for us.

Mustang won national championships in 2017 and 2019.

CMCC women’s basketball coach Andrew Morong said Strachan was also a factor in the Mustang’s success.

It’s always nice to have a local award on your team, ”Muron said.“ Emily came in and she immediately needed us to be a better guy. It was a hiring announcement and that’s what happened.

“I’m made real progress. I’ve scored over 30 goals in a game this year. She’s been our top scorer, but she’s grown to be an all – rounder. She’s one of our best external defenders.

Strachan said the “holding” of the CMCC’s tradition of playing fast and furious basketball has given Mustangs Nationals a ride.

“I like that we all come from different places,” says Strachan, who takes public courses before embarking on a major. “So I have a lot of new friends, I feel at the beginning of this year, we came very close and overcame some obstacles.

“My favorite part of the team are the friendships I made. They are like my family now.

Strachan, who averages 13.5 points per game and 61.3 percent from mistakes, knows the young Mustangs will play a role in how far his team has progressed in the national team.

“Again, we’re so young,” he said. He said: “Sometimes we don’t come out strong, we make stupid mistakes, but I think if we stick together and play the way we play.[South Maine Community College]We’ll be fine. “” I’m proud of ourselves and I’m glad it’s where it goes. “

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Brolt, a New Hampshire sophomore, was instrumental in Mustang’s 57-50 win over South Maine to host the fifth consecutive Yankee Small College Conference Championship following the CMCC.

He fell on two late Mustangs and two free throws. Bralt averaged 7.6 points per game and scored 60 percent of errors. He plans to play in college for four years for the next two years.

“Saturday night stopped the (last) game for us,” Muron said of the conference championship game. “She was 2-3 in the second half and we relied on her experience. She had two thefts and two big wins. .. I’m excited because I hope it will be a step towards a better national championship for her.

“((Brault) was an American sophomore player as a freshman,” Morong added. “She had a mixed year. She played well, disappeared with us, played better, disappeared. “

Bralt said the CMCC season is once again relying on each other.

“It’s a young team,” he says. “We had to find a way to be together, especially with the coaches. I think it was a little hard. We all feel responsible for each other.”

“I love this team because they’re all like my little sisters. We’ve become a family so quickly. We have women from the Netherlands, New Zealand and Florida.” I “.

Bralt is very confident in the Mustang, even though they started as a starting team.

“I have a lot of confidence in my team because, even at our young age, a lot of people didn’t expect us to do anything, and it’s going to prove wrong. It’s going to burn our asses like it should.”

But he insisted the CMCC should not look at anything other than the next game.

“I would say we will win everything, but focus on the matter at the right time,” he said. “That’s what the coach wants to say. We talked about it a lot. We don’t want to get caught up in the noise of the citizens. We’ll be trading down.”

Brolt is looking forward to another mentor – graduating with his mother Andrea, who is taking online classes at CMCC.

“She’s left her Major,” Bralt said. “I know she worked hard. No one in my family goes to college – we graduate at the same time. So it’s so awesome.”

The coach’s vision

Athletes need patience to harvest a new crop, Mrong said.

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“We have a young team – 16 newcomers came to us and one returned,” he said. “(There is) a lot of talent, maybe more than we had, but the least experience we have had. So as a coach and coaching staff we have to be very patient – and I’m the least patient I know.

“So it was a big challenge for all of us, the kids have to be patient too. We see it coming. We see its growth, we go 10 steps forward and 20 steps back.

Patience and the learning process eventually bring citizens mustangs.

“This is the expectation every year,” Mrong said. “We have won eight of the last ten conference championships, won five of the last conference championships and played in our last four national championships.

“The minimum expectation is to win the conference and go to the Nationals. Despite being a young team, we kept telling them that was the expectation, guys.

Morang saw something different in the Mustangs.

“I would say youth is ignorance,” Mrong said. “Because they are so young they do not know they are there. I think it has a lot to do with our diversity.

“We have a few minor players from three countries, seven states and different backgrounds – and I think we’re doing a great job of building and learning from each other.

Looking back on the regular season, Morang did not know if there was going to be a turning point in the Mustangs.

“I always say to our teams, ‘A good boss is the best boss when players take the keys from coaches – (and) it hasn’t happened yet,” he said. “Every year it happens at different points for each team and I hope it comes later.

“They’ve had moments when they struggled in misery … but they did not come forward and say, ‘Now we’ve got it.'” I hope it’s coming in the next 48 to 72 hours.


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