Top four scorers return for women's basketball team

WATERVILLE, Maine -- With the top four scorers back from last year's New England Small College Athletic Conference semifinal team, the Colby College women's basketball team heads into the 2017-18 season aiming to build upon that strong finish.
The Mules finished the season 13-12 overall and made the league semifinals after earning a win over fourth-seeded Middlebury College in a quarterfinal game. Colby won its final two NESCAC regular season games before the win over the Panthers.
"This is a fun team to coach," Colby head coach Brittany Gaetano said. "They are a very tight-knit group and are committed to pushing themselves and each other to improve every day. I am excited for what's to come." 
Colby opens the 2017-18 season Friday at 2 p.m. against University of Massachusetts at Boston on the first day of the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth Tournament.  
The returners
* Senior center Haley Driscoll (Bedford, N.H.), a two-year captain, led the Mules in scoring (11.7) and was tied for first in rebounding (6.0). She heads into her senior year with 694 points and 391 rebounds. Driscoll made the Maine All-State Second Team last season. 
* Emily Davis (Sudbury, Mass.), a junior center, had a breakout season after finishing second on the Mules in scoring (8.4) and tied for first in rebounding (6.0). Davis averaged more points per game (9.7) in league contests than in regular season games.
* Sophomore guard Ainsley Burns (Barrington, R.I.) made the Maine State All-Rookie Team after averaging 8.1 points (8.8 in conference games). She also led the team in blocked shots with 22.
* The other returning starter is senior co-captain Katie McCrum (pictured, Saco, Maine), who led the Mules in made 3-point shots (32) last year. She was fourth on the team in scoring (7.7) and second in assists (2.8). 
* With All-NESCAC point guard MK Caverly lost to graduation, the Mules will look to junior Sarah Hancock (Casco, Maine) and sophomore Paige Russell (Alexandria, Va.) to help lead the offense. 
* Junior guard Jackie Albanese (Manhasset, N.Y.) made 11 3-point shots a year ago and averaged about nine minutes a game. Sophomore center Jane MacKerron (New York, N.Y.) saw limited time last year, but still averaged 2.2 rebounds per game. 
The newcomers
* The Mules add some size in 6-2 first-year center Grace Coutu (Barrington, R.I.). Fellow first-years Emma LaCascia (Hopkinton, Mass.) and Kara Petronio (Needham, Mass.) played club basketball together with the Bay State Jaguars. LaCascia will play a guard position and Petronio is a forward.
The schedule
After competing in the UMass-Dartmouth Tournament, Colby will have its home opener against Thomas College on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.