University of Findlay men’s and women’s basketball teams amid a ‘rollercoaster’ season

By Lauren Wolters,

Both the University of Findlay men’s and women’s teams are looking for a spark to finish their seasons strong. The women’s team is 6-9 on the season, losing their last game to Ashland (32-81) on January 13. The men’s team is also 6-9 on the season. They also lost to Ashland (86-94) on January 13.  

Head coach of the women’s basketball team Michelle Durand summarized her thoughts on their recent games in an email interview.  

“The Thomas More and Ashland games were tough,” Durand said. “We had our chances with Thomas More and the Ashland game was difficult to put it mildly.” 

Charles Ernst, the head coach of the men’s basketball team also shared some of his thoughts on their season so far. 

This team has suffered a fair amount of disappointment thus far, but they have not stopped working hard,” Ernst said. “There is still a lot of basketball to play.” 

Durand reiterated Ernst’s statement for the women’s team about working hard.  

We’ve had a lot of ups and downs during the season but that’s to be expected,” Durand said. “We have a very young team and this is just my second year. My assistant is in his first year. We come to the gym every day ready to work, but it’s been a bit of a roller coaster.” 

Both Durand and Ernst stated that the men’s and women’s teams have struggled to play consistently throughout the season. Ernst explained that the team has struggled with more than one specific area. 

“Early in the year, we totally relied on 3-point shooting,” Ernst said. “As we’ve played better, we have achieved better balance on offense. I expect to see more of that and just hard-nosed and great communication on defense.” 

“It hasn’t been one thing,” Ernst said.  “When we fix one thing, we have sprung a leak somewhere else. We have to start stacking performances so that we can develop an identity.” 

Durand added that currently the women’s team is struggling to score.  

This week is a new week,” Durand said. “As long as we stick together and keep working, good things will eventually happen.” 

Despite these setbacks, both coaches acknowledged the successes their teams’ experienced. 

“I think our depth has been good throughout the year and we have overcome injuries because of that,” Ernst said. “Our defense is getting better every day, and we are all getting a better sense of who we are and [what we] need to be.” 

Durand added that the women’s team is focusing on the process.  

“We are trying to get our daily habits right, work on our team culture, and improve every day,” Durand said. “The end result will take care of itself if our process is good.” 

The women’s team plays next at home vs Cedarville at 5:30 p.m. January 18. The men’s team plays at Northwood at 8 p.m. on January 18. 

“These guys have never stopped working,” Ernst said. “I see improvement, so I’m excited to see the improvement pay off.”