Brandon University Bobcats women’s basketball team head coach Novell Thomas rounded out his recruiting class on Friday with Regina native Kylee Howard transfering to his squad for next season.
Howard, a 5-foot-8 point guard, comes to Brandon after one season with the Medicine Hat College Rattlers, and Thomas believes she’s determined to prove herself at the CIS level.
"I get this sense that she just wants to not only play at this level, but excel at this level and she wants to learn the game, which is great," he said. "I’m pretty demanding of my point guards, and I think she’s the type of player that will soak up every last word that I have in terms of playing that position and she’ll deal with that. I’m excited."
In her rookie season, Howard started all 21 games for the Rattlers and helped them post an 11-9 regular-season record in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference. She averaged 21.9 minutes, 4.3 points and 2.6 rebounds per game and led the squad with 20 three-pointers and 40 assists.
Howard, a graduate of Balfour Collegiate, decided to go to Medicine Hat with the hopes of making the jump to the CIS ranks, and she’s looking forward to joining the Bobcats next season.
"I honestly didn’t know too much about Brandon University before, but after visiting the school and talking with Novell I’ve definitely made the right decision," Howard stated in a press release. "I’m really looking forward to meeting new people and having the opportunity to play university basketball. Playing university basketball has been a goal of mine, so I hope to make the most of it."
Thomas doesn’t expecting Howard to start next season, figuring she’ll compete to back up starting point guard Aleah Bridges instead. He said she will be able to contribute while she develops.
"I think she has quite a bit of room for improvement, but I think she has high enough skill level where she can help us out immediately," he said.
Playing CIS basketball runs in the family for Howard, whose sister Kabree just finished her fourth year with the Saskatchewan Huskies. Howard is looking forward to the first weekend of the second semester next season so she can play against her for two games.
"I told my parents when we play Saskatchewan they have to come watch," said Howard, who plans to study education. "It will definitely be exciting."
Howard is the sixth recruit for the Bobcats women’s basketball team this season, along with American imports Mikaela Stanton and Alyssa Montgomery as well as Hamiota’s Shayna Mathison and Virden’s Logan Biccum and Natalie Vachon.