Probably the most soft-spoken of the Panthers, sophomore
Cora McManus is definitely not a quiet presence on the court. She has earned
the start in the past three games and made the most of the opportunity,
averaging seven points and six rebounds over that span.
Last season, McManus spent most of the season on the
sidelines due to an injury and season-ending surgery. The Seattle native -- who
began playing basketball in the sixth grade because her team needed more
players -- is ready to be more of a vocal leader in 2013 on and off the court.
When Marquel Davis arrived at Pitt three years
ago, she made a pledge to herself. The junior would work on her defense first,
as there were five upperclassmen in the lineup. Davis believed that would
elevate her game and get her on the floor.
"I have tried to perfect my defense each year,"
said Davis. "When I steal the ball, I am so excited. When I just get a
deflection, I get ticked at myself because I know if I was maybe a step ahead
or a step more in the gap, then maybe we would have completely gotten the
A native of Fredericksburg, Va., Davis had a
team-high 35 steals last season and has 10 so far this campaign through seven
games. The guard - who has worn a mask to protect an injury she suffered in
preseason - has not given up on her offensive prowess having notched three
double figure scoring games this young season.
Ashlee Anderson has played more games than any
other player on the Pitt roster - and she's still got this season and next to
wear the Blue & Gold.
With 67 career games to her credit, the Chicago
native arrived at Pitt in 2009 from one of the most heralded high school
programs in the nation (Whitney Young). "That was the greatest preparation
for me to make the next step. I felt prepared coming to Pitt as a freshman as
far as conditioning, traveling, and the competition. I knew I would be prepared
for college because we always played against the best teams."
While Anderson has grown to love Pittsburgh (the
city), it won't be replacing her affection for her hometown something she knows
'native Pittsburghers' can understand. "I don't think words can describe
my love for Chicago. For anyone that knows me, anyone that meets me, I am the
biggest Chicago fan. We have so much love for our city because it offers so
much. Growing up on the Southside of Chicago and going to school on the
Northwest end, I learned so many things to help me grow as a person and take
with me through life."
For the record, the 5-9 guard is a White Sox fan
- and in Ashlee's own words is, 'always rooting for the Bulls.'
The highest ranked
recruit in women's basketball program history -- Loliya Briggs -- will have her
official debut as a Panther on Friday, Nov. 9 when Pitt hosts Youngstown State
in the season opener.
Briggs, a native of
Gainesville, Fla., saw her first collegiate season end before it started when
she was sidelined during the summer of 2011 with a knee injury. Despite not being able to play, Briggs was
named a team captain prior to last season and has earned the leader role again this
Pitt women's basketball begins the 2012-13 season on
Saturday, Nov. 3 with an exhibition contest versus Lock Haven. The Panthers and Lady Eagles tip at noon at
the Petersen Events Center.
Head Coach Agnus Berenato, who begins her 10th
season at Pitt this fall, returns three starters including sophomore Brianna
The Big East All-Freshman team selection led the Panthers
in a host of categories last season, including scoring (13.6), assists (3.0)
and minutes per game (36.3). The Utica, N.Y., native -- along with redshirt
junior Abby Dowd and redshirt freshman Loliya Briggs -- was named team captain