Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Slu Senior Finds Something Worth Waiting For: Winning

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Slu Senior Finds Something Worth Waiting For: Winning

Article excerpt

In 1992, Constance Lockett didn't mind the notion of climbing aboard a team in transition.

The East St. Louisan figured it would take time, patience, all the things people never seem to have enough of, to see victories become the expected rather than the unlikely for St. Louis University's women's basketball team.

But the 5-foot-10 forward never counted on having to wait so long. The only senior now playing for the Billikens, Lockett finally is getting a feel for wins. However, even though the team's 5-2 record represents the best start for the Billikens in 11 years, Lockett knows well enough not to get too enthralled with scores tipping toward SLU. "I'm careful because we've gotten off on a good note every year I've been here," the team captain said. "I'm hoping for the best, but I'm not going to be saying we're going to be 23-2." But she's keeping her fingers crossed. "This year," she said, "it can change." It wouldn't be the first thing to change for SLU. For one, the Billikens' lineup has undergone massive renovation, with five freshmen, five sophomores, one junior and Lockett. Of the batch of young teammates, Lockett said, "We don't look at them as freshmen anymore because they carry as much burden as the upperclassmen do. And we all have one goal in mind." In her second year of coaching the Billikens, Jill Pizzotti recognizes the limitations of a youthful team but doesn't seem at all fearful of them. "We've got to be one of the youngest teams in the country," Pizzotti said. "But we've got more talent (this year). It's young talent, but it is talent. "The biggest adjustment is in the level of intensity. We're asking a lot of our freshmen. If there had to be a negative to it, it's a lack of experience and a lack of consistency. "The toughest thing," Pizzotti added, "is convincing these kids that they're winners. I think they're starting to believe that they're pretty good, that they can win some ball games. "It definitely feels better than last year." The Billikens play at Arkansas tonight. James Molloy of Maryland Heights has been named coach of the Billikens softball team following the departure last spring of coach Denise Swanger. …

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