Gator Women’s Basketball Team Looks to Bounce Back

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Amanda Butler addresses the Gator Madness crowd last Friday.

The Florida women’s basketball team is practicing now in preparation for the start of the 2015/16 season that begins with a game at Temple University on November 13th.  Florida comes off a 13-17 season a year ago.

The Gator women participated in this past weekend’s Gator Madness event and UF coach Amanda Butler and the Gators answered questions about the upcoming season at their annual Media Day.

Butler stresses that the team and coaching staff are ready to get started and show the Gator Nation how much they have improved in all aspects of the game. With five returning seniors, including Carlie Needles, Cassie Peoples and others, and new bonding strategies, the Gators have high hopes for this season.

“I think collectively this group has a chance to be one of the best teams that ever played here,” said Butler.

One of two freshmen on the team traveled a long way from home to be a part of  Gator Nation. Standing at 5’11” Eleanna Christinaki is from Athens, Greece. Coach Butler believes the guard is a great asset to the team.

“She’s fun to watch, she’s fun to play, she’s a lot of personality, she gives us size on the perimeter, she can shoot it, but she’s just really dynamic with the ball in her hands and really threatening. I think she’s a tough match up,” Butler said.

It was noted that during the summer, the Gators faced new obstacles and bonding experiences while adventuring in the woods at Camp Crystal Lake and new training experiences in the ring while boxing.

To win the close games they lost last season (Florida lost seven games by seven points or less) all 13 Gators are expected to give their all on the court this season and to display the toughness and sister-hoods that were instilled in them during the off-season.

Click below to listen to audio from Amanda Butler.

Amanda Butler talks about team’s improvement

Amanda Butler talks about Eleanna Christinaki


About Darwin Patterson

A senior at the University of Florida reporting on Gator sports, local Gainesville and surrounding area sports, and telling the stories of local athletes. Born and raised in Gainesville, Florida with a passion for telling people's stories and having fun doing it.

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