Megan Frazee and the San Antonio Silver Stars will tip off the 2010 WNBA season Saturday versus the Atlanta Dream. (Photo by D. Clarke Evans - NBAE/Getty Images)
Less than 14 months removed from her final game in a Liberty uniform, Megan Frazee is ready to begin her third season of professional basketball. Frazee and the San Antonio Silver Stars will host the Atlanta Dream on Saturday, tipping off the 2010 WNBA season for both teams. Frazee, a 6-3 second-year forward for the Silver Stars, gained valuable experience during the WNBA's off-season. She played for Cankaya of the Turkish Women's Basketball League (TBBL) and fared quite well. Frazee ranked third in the league in scoring (19.2 ppg) and fourth in rebounding (11.7 rpg) and played in the league's all-star game. Frazee is expected to play an increased role for the revamped Silver Stars, after posting 5.0 ppg and 2.9 rpg in 29 appearances off the bench as a rookie. She helped San Antonio go 15-19 and reach the 2009 WNBA Playoffs, where the Silver Stars were eliminated by the eventual WNBA champion, Phoenix. San Antonio won both of its preseason exhibition games, defeating the Chinese National Team and the Los Angeles Sparks. Frazee led the Silver Stars' offensive attack with 12 points in just 17 minutes of action during a 91-57 triumph versus the Chinese National Team on May 4. She then started against Los Angeles on Saturday, contributing nine points and four rebounds to San Antonio's 86-77 victory. With Dan Hughes stepping aside to serve as the team's general manager, Sandy Brondello has taken over as Silver Stars head coach this season. Her husband, former Liberty associate head coach Olaf Lange (2005-07) has been promoted to the same role at San Antonio. With Brondello pregnant with the couple's second child, Lange will temporarily act as head coach later this season, after the baby is delivered. The Silver Stars' roster once again features the dynamic duo of 5-6 guard Becky Hammon and 6-1 forward Sophia Young. Hammon (19.5 ppg) and Young (18.2 ppg) both ranked among the league's top five scorers in 2009, and both were voted to the All-WNBA Team. San Antonio also welcomes the addition of 6-4 rookie center Jayne Appel. The Silver Stars took the former Stanford All-American with the No. 5 pick in the 2010 WNBA Draft. San Antonio's 34-game regular-season schedule features two appearances on ESPN2, a July 6 home contest against Connecticut and a July 27 game at New York. The Silver Stars' closest visits to Lynchburg will be a June 13 tilt at Atlanta and a July 29 outing at Washington. For the second consecutive season, fans will be able to watch quite a few games on the Internet, free of charge, via the WNBA LiveAccess feature. A question-and-answer session with Frazee follows.
San Antonio Silver Stars 2010 Schedule Highlights May 15 – Atlanta at San Antonio – 8 p.m. (Season Opener) June 13 – San Antonio at Atlanta – 3 p.m. July 6 – Connecticut at San Antonio – 8 p.m. (Televised by ESPN2) July 10 – 2010 WNBA All-Star Game – 3:30 p.m. (Uncasville, Conn. – Televised by ESPN) July 27 – San Antonio at New York – 7:30 p.m. (Televised by ESPN2) July 29 – San Antonio at Washington – 7 p.m. Aug. 22 – Phoenix at San Antonio – 3 p.m. (Regular Season Finale) Aug. 26 – Start of 2010 WNBA Playoffs All times listed are Eastern
Question-and-Answer with Megan Frazee LibertyFlames.com (LF): How have things been different for you this preseason in San Antonio, as opposed to last year as a rookie? Megan Frazee (MF): This preseason has been a lot different for several reasons. I am no longer a "rookie," which is nice. We also have a new head coach, Sandy Brondello, and because of the season starting earlier, we have not had our entire team here for training camp. We are still missing a few girls who are playing overseas. Our first game is on Saturday, so it is kind of crazy that we have not been able to practice with the entire team yet.
I feel a lot more comfortable with the system that is in place this year! Having a year under my belt, I feel like I am not thinking as much when it comes to running the plays. Sandy has added some new plays, but I feel like mentally I have grown a lot from where I was last year.
LF: How has it been transitioning to Sandy Brondello as head coach? MF: It has been a very smooth transition to Sandy being the head coach. Sandy and [Associate Head Coach] Olaf [Lange] both did some of the on-court coaching in practice last year, so we are all used to them coaching us. Sandy is a GREAT coach! She relates extremely well to the players and is a good communicator. Olaf is an awesome associate head coach. It is kind of like old times at Liberty, when he coached me there. Olaf and Sandy have a vast knowledge about the game, and I count it a privilege to be able to be coached by them. They work so well together!
LF: What do you see as your role on this year's team? MF: My role on the team this year will be one of me doing whatever the coaches ask me to do. I learned so much this past year, and was able to apply a lot of things that I learned here in San Antonio over in Turkey. Turkey was a great opportunity for me to be able to get a lot of on-court time and experience. I hope to be able to assist my team in whatever the coaches ask me to do.
LF: How has the team changed/adapted this year, compared to last year's squad? MF: This year, we will have a lot of new faces on the team. I have heard that it is probably the most amount of turnover that the team has had during its years of existence. Training camp has been super competitive which has been great!
Sandy is really emphasizing to us the importance of speeding up the game. We are trying to increase our number of offensive possessions per game. Sandy likes to use the phrase, "Play at two speeds." We do want to play fast, but at the same time we have to play smart. In our first two preseason games, I feel like everyone is adapting to the new system, and I think we have the potential to do some big things this year.
LF: What are the most important things you can take away from your experience playing in Turkey? MF: My experience in Turkey was AMAZING! The Lord taught me so much through the seven months that I was over there. The Lord opened up a lot of neat ministry opportunities, for which I am grateful! I found a great church in the city, and then I started a Bible study with some of my teammates.
It was awesome being able to play basketball in a different country. My teammates were all great, which was awesome.
The Lord really blessed me over there. It was neat to see HIS hand at work in my life and the lives around me.
The most important thing I can take away from Turkey, is just getting my eyes opened to another culture, and seeing how ripe the fields are for harvest. I made some awesome friends over there, and the Lord allowed me to be a light for Him, for which I am thankful.
I was encouraged to see how the Lord made Himself known in many different and unique ways. The Lord reigns!
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