Thursday, April 26, 2007

New Faces

Another day, another new group at Storm practice. Shyra Ely and Tye'sha Fluker joined the group last night, while Sarah McKay and Aya Traore were waived this morning.

"We felt like Shyra came in had a nod over Aya in the three spot, so that's why we let Aya go," said Storm Coach Anne Donovan. "Sarah - same thing. We just felt like Tye, in the short period of time we were able to look at Tye, and Ashley continues to improve, that her shot at making the team was going to be a longshot."

Donovan mentioned yesterday that she's looking at some of the players invited to camp as future prospects should the Storm need a player midseason. Donovan said McKay would definitely be a part of that group, as a 6-7 post who has room to develop.

I was a little surprised when Donovan said that 2006 first-round pick Barbara Turner, solid as a rookie last season, will have to play for her job during camp.

"For a while, we had to evaluate, did we think Aya could outplay Barb? Without Barb being here, it's tough to really get a handle on that. When Shyra came in, it became clear that Shyra was better than Aya, so we now we have to evaluate Barb and Shyra, probably."

Katie Gearlds, however, is a lock in Donovan's mind.

By the end of today's practice, the Storm was down to six players. Fluker rolled an ankle and showed her toughness by trying to get back on the floor, but the staff wanted her to rest. With no evening session today, Fluker should be available tomorrow. Yolanda Paige's injury could be more serious, as she has a sore left knee.

"We're going to get an MRI," Donovan said. "She tweaked it in the morning, I guess, and played through it last night. Woke up this morning with a lot of stiffness."

The group that's in camp is expected to swell tomorrow, when invitee Brooke Queenan arrives from overseas. Queenan should be available for tomorrow's evening session. Janell Burse and Betty Lennox will likely be back early next week, probably at practice on Tuesday.

Donovan doesn't expect to add any free agents after signing Ely yesterday.

"Right now, we have no other plans, but we are looking at the waiver (wire) every day," said Donovan. "I feel really good with what we've got. I think we've got some really hard decisions just with the players we have here and the ones coming in, so I don't anticipate any additions, but we'll see. I might regret saying that if people free up."

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