Marquette women’s basketball looks for its next Selena Lott

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Photo by Collin Nawrocki

Graduate student guard Karissa McLaughlin.

For the first time in the Megan Duffy era, Marquette women’s basketball will enter the season without a leading scorer.

Selena Lott called that role hers the last two years playing on Wisconsin Avenue, but has now graduated after starting each of the 56 games she played in the last two seasons. Lott amassed 1193 career points during her career in the blue and gold, which sits 23rd all-time in program history.

Lott, who was a two-time All-BIG EAST honoree, was a key player during the Golden Eagles’ historic season last year. The Troy, New York native averaged 14.7 points, 5.2 assists and 5.3 rebounds per game last season.

Meanwhile on the defensive side, Lott earned the first BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Award in program history last season as she led the team with 2.2 steals and 0.8 blocked shots per game.

“Selena did so much for us,” Duffy said. “The way she impacted the game defensively is overlooked.  Night in and night out she guarded the other team’s best player, she shared the basketball and obviously she was capable of having big nights offensively for us.”

As the Golden Eagles embark on a new season, the question that is still remaining is who will be able to fill the whole that Lott’s loss creates.  

“There is a new role with Jordan King that we are excited to see, our two transfers will bring experience and a confidence to score the basketball,” Duffy said. “We are going to do a few things differently to shape our new team, it will be interesting our first couple games of the season.”

Redshirt sophomore guard Jordan King is stepping into a bigger role now that Lott is gone, but as she said it is not just her stepping into this new role, it is the whole team, not anyone individually.

“Personally I am stepping into a bigger role and I am just excited to continue to develop and grow and I have a great support system around me thats gonna help me day in and day out” King said. “We really talked about taking this on as a team there is not one person that can fill that exact role so its really important that we buy into each other.”

King commented on Selena’s strengths for Marquette and how she helped the team grow on both the offensive and the defensive side.

“Selena was a great player for us, she helped us a lot defensively and offensively she was able to help us grow in different aspects with her rebounding, her assists, her scoring obviously was a big part of it too,” King said.

While assistant coaches Tasha Taylor and Kelly Komara are new to the team this season, both know the type of player Lott was and how important she was to Marquette’s success.

“The biggest thing for us is, we are going to have to be more so a team this year. We got to play together and share the ball, that’s going to be the biggest piece for us just because we lost such a big scoring piece in Selena,” Taylor said.

Komara said energy and effort will be two things Marquette’s guards will need to bring to practice throughout the season to help fill Lott’s shoes.

“There are a lot of players that bring competitiveness and energy to the program and that is something that when a big time player leaves a program you need to fill their shoes,” Komara said.

Aside of shifting King back to the point, there is a potential replacement for Lott’s old spot: graduate student transfer Karissa McLaughlin.

McLaughlin is a 5-foot-7 guard who transferred to Marquette this past summer after three and a half seasons with the Purdue Boilermakers in the Big Ten.

Though both Komara and McLaughlin are new to Marquette, Komara said she has known McLaughlin for some time as she recruited her while she was in high school.

“The thing about Karissa is that she is never satisfied with her performance. She is always working at her craft and trying to get better,” Komara said. “The thing that she does so well is, she brings a veteran sort of ora to her when she comes to practice.”

Komara said McLaughlin’s veteran experience and success at Purdue will benefit the guard unit and team this season.

“She has played at a high-level for a number of years,” Komara said. “She approaches practice, games and her training like a professional. And when somebody does that it just inspires the younger players to rise to her level.”

McLaughlin holds the record at Purdue for all-time 3-pointers (244) and was a three-time All-Big Ten selection for the Boilermakers. During her sophomore season, she led Purdue in points per game (15.1) and 3-pointers made (88). In the Boilermakers win against Northwestern that year McLaughlin hit nine 3-pointers as she finished with 28 total points.

She said she hopes to bring her record breaking numbers from beyond the arc to Marquette this season.

“We have a lot of great offensive sets, a lot of down screens, a lot of staggers,” McLaughlin said. “I am excited to run off those and knock down some threes for my teammates.”

This article was written by Kelly Reilly. She can be reached at kelly.reilly@marquette.edu or on Twitter @Kellyreillyyy.