The Kentucky Women Basketball Team’s season may seem far away, but in reality, it’s just around the corner. Although there’s been a few new members joining the program, there’s even more returning to finish what they started. One of those determined Wildcats is Robyn Benton.
The Conyers, Georgia native is heading into her senior season with high hopes. Benton had a solid junior season but, like the rest of the team, struggled with consistency. Benton averaged a respectable 6.6 points, 2.5 rebounds, one assist and 18 minutes per game, but struggled to find her rhythm the second half of the season.
In fact, during the ‘Cats first 15 games of the season, Benton was averaging 9.5 points per game. Unfortunately, Benton was never able to score nine points again after reaching this mark.
At first glance this may seem like just a disappointing statistic, but Benton’s slow finish honestly leads to an even more impressive conclusion. In spite of Benton’s scoring slump, she still finished fourth on the team in scoring per game. Furthermore, she achieved this while averaging the seventh most minutes for the Wildcats.
Obviously, Benton has the ability to be a serious contributor to the ‘Cats her senior season, but the question remains: how can head coach Kyra Elzy best use her abilities?
To start with, she needs to be at shooting guard. As tempting as it may be at times to slide her in at point to create a squad of scorers, Benton is best when playing from the wing. She won’t have to worry about distribution, just simply getting buckets.
Next, Elzy has to be willing to play Benton during shooting slumps. As the old saying goes shooters shoot and Benton is a shooter. In Benton’s final eight games of the season, she only averaged 12 minutes on the court.
If a player like Benton is struggling, the only way to help is to give her the chance to shoot again. Elzy has to recognize this and play Benton accordingly.
Finally, Elzy has to find a way to increase Benton’s efficiency. The guard shot 38% from the field and 30% from deep last season. Although there’s no doubt Benton has the capability to drop some serious baskets, it won’t matter if she’s not making any of those baskets. For Benton to reach her full potential, she’ll have to reach maximum efficiency.
Benton may only be one piece to the Wildcats’ puzzle, but she can make all the difference. With a year under her belt and new assistant coach Gail Goestenkors by her side, Coach Elzy could find Benton’s perfect role for this coming year’s team. The success of the Wildcats’ season could depend upon it.