CCBC Es­sex women’s bas­ket­ball signs trans­fer from Miz­zou

The Dundalk Eagle - - FRONT PAGE - By BILL GATES bgates@ches­pub.com

The 2019-20 sea­son for the CCBC Es­sex women’s bas­ket­ball team ended pre­ma­turely with the Knights poised to lay for the NJCAA Di­vi­sion II cham­pi­onship.

The NJCAA tour­na­ment, like the NCAA Di­vi­sion I men’s and women’s tour­na­ments, and all spring spor ts, were can­celled due to con­cerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.

For an Es­sex pro­gram play­ing its first sea­son in 15 years, it was a par­tic­u­larly bit­ter out­come to en­dure.

The Knights were 30-2 and were poised to make a run at the ti­tle. In­stead, they had to stand down and then have sev­eral key play­ers move on to four-year uni­ver­si­ties.

On the other hand, when­ever the next sea­son does get started — some­time in Jan­uary? — Es­sex will be ready. Head coach Mike Seney and his staff have not been sit­ting around mourn­ing what might have been.

An al­ready-im­pres­sive re­cruit­ing class was capped last week by the ad­di­tion of a trans­fer stu­dent from the Univer­sity of Mis­souri.

Yes, a for­mer South­east Con­fer­ence player who was con­sid­ered a top 100 player com­ing out of high school (where she scored over 1,000 points in just two-anda-half sea­sons) in 2018 will be lin­ing up for the Knights: Brit­tany Garner, a 6-foot-4 for­ward from Philadel­phia.

Garner’s older brother, Ma­lik, played at the Univer­sity of Mary­land, Bal­ti­more County from 2012-15.

With the sit­u­a­tion not work­ing out at Mis­souri (she played just 80 min­utes last sea­son) and Garner look­ing for a new home, some lo­cal con­nec­tions helped bring her to Es­sex.

Brit­tany’s fa­ther, Ryan, is the di­rec­tor of the AAU pro­gram where Brit­tany plays. He’s also a Philadel­phia leg­end.

Philadel­phia is Seney’s home town.

“I’ve had a re­la­tion­ship with [Ryan] since I was a kid,” Seney said. “He’s sent me a few play­ers in the past few years, and when Brit­tany de­cided she needed a fresh start I reached out to him to see if she was in­ter­ested in a junior col­lege year.

“At Miz­zou, I think Brit­tany just didn’t fit into the sys­tem and needed to move on and find a style that fits her and gives her the op­por­tu­nity to be her­self again on the court.”

Ob­vi­ously, Brit­tany did not mind a sea­son play­ing JuCo ball.

“I chose Es­sex be­cause I feel it is the best place for me to get bet­ter while work­ing to­wards re-en­ter­ing the NCAA arena,” Brit­tany said.

“An ac­com­plish­ment I’m look­ing for­ward to this sea­son would be re­gain­ing my con­fi­dence and even­tu­ally earn­ing a Di­vi­sion I schol­ar­ship.”

Garner will help off­set the loss of 6-foot-3 Ais­linn Flynn to a four-year school.

“She’s a bit dif­fer­ent from Ais­linn as she’s more of a dom­i­nant layer in­side,” Seney said. “But we will al­low her to show­case her en­tire skill set. She is ex­tremely tal­ented all over the court whether it be in­side and out.”

Garner is the ninth player Es­sex has signed for the up­com­ing sea­son. The other eight are:

Macken­zie Vest of Dun­bar High in D.C., a DCSAA All-Star pick; Lil­lian Har­ris from West­min­ster High in Car­roll County, where she av­er­aged 20 points a game; Vanessa Sch­warz­mann from Largo High, where she was All-Price Ge­orge’s County first-team as a junior and se­nior; Toyin Allen, an all-state and 1,000-point scorer from Great Mills High;

Ka’lerra Reed, a trans­fer from Trin­ity Val­ley Com­mu­nity Col­lege; Tania Hill, a 6-foot-1 trans­fer from UMBC; Des­tini Stert­ing, a 1,000-point scorer from Cap­i­tal Chris­tian Academy; and Ana­sia Sta­ton, who was a first-team All-Hud­son Val­ley pick in high school and ranked 24th in New Jer­sey.

Brit­tany Garner, a 6-4 for­ward, has trans­ferred from the Univer­sity of Mis­souri to CCBC Es­sex.

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