Trasolini, Foster Named to Preseason All-WCC Team
Junior Marc Trasolini and sophomore-redshirt Kevin Foster have been named to the West Coast Conference preseason all-league basketball team. Santa Clara is one of four teams in the WCC with two players on the preseason all-league list. Santa Clara was picked fourth overall and Gonzaga is picked to win the league. Click here for the WCC release.
Trasolini led Santa Clara in points, rebounds and blocks last year, averaging 13.7 ppg, 6.1 rpg and 1.6 bpg, playing 29.3 mpg. Trasolini's 50 blocked shots last season was No. 5 on the single season list. His 87 career blocks are No. 5 on the career blocks list; and he is on pace to break John Bryant's school record (246, 2005-09).
Trasolini was named all-league last year with Foster missing most of the season due to a broken foot in early December. Trasolini and Foster were both named to the 2008 WCC All-Freshman team. That same year, Foster was named the WCC Newcomer of the Year and a Freshman All-American team when he broke Steve Nash's single season for three pointers with 85. Foster was also named to the preseason all-league team in 2009.
"Everyone knows that preseason polls and teams are more for the fans, but it's nice for Marc Trasolini and Kevin Foster to be recognized on the pre-season team based on their past accomplishments. Hopefully they will both continue to develop for our program as leaders," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating. "We continue to work on developing confidence with Marc in his game. He was thrust into a leadership role last year on and off the court with Kevin's injury. He needs to understand he can be one of the better players in this league this year. Kevin is continuing to work on getting in shape after missing most of last season due to injury."
Trasolini and Foster said they were honored to be named to a team with so many good players. "This is a really good list. It's an honor to be included," said Foster. "In addition to this list, I see a lot of really good players when I walk in our gym as well. Robert Smith might be one of the fastest guards in the country and Marc Trasolini has really stepped up his game from last year. We are really looking forward to the season."
"Confidence is really big for me. I never expected to be in this position when I first came to Santa Clara, achieving the things I have," said Trasolini. "Now that I see that it's attainable, for me to be a really good player, it helps me to have a positive mindset. In the past when I haven't played well to start the game, I sometimes became a ghost on the floor. I am working on the mental aspects of it, gaining experience and maturity. My teammates and my coaches have helped me a lot because it's not something that's tangible. Confidence that is. I am really excited about our first game. I'm really looking forward to this season."
Trasolini said he is happy with the improved strength of the league this season. "I am not sure I was expecting the league to be as strong when I first came to Santa Clara, but each year it gets better with more teams going further in the NCAA Tournament," said Trasolini, who likes what he sees of this year's Bronco team. "Kevin and Robert are running the team with the guards, working the offense and making sure things run smoothly. As far as the bigs, Ben Dowdell is doing a good job of leading the team. Niyi Harrison and Troy Payne are working hard to bring defense and rebounding to the table. Honestly, all my teammates are doing a great job to support us. It's going to take all of us contributing to make sure we win this year."
Foster is really excited to be back on the court after missing most of last season with a broken foot. Foster was averaging 19.8 ppg before breaking his foot in Santa Clara's 71-68 win at UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 1. "It's great to be back on the court and be with my teammates again. I am going to play every game like it's my last. I can't take advantage of the game because every game could be my last. I learned that last year when I broke my foot," said Foster. "I am working to dedicate myself even more and that includes on and off the court. I am in the training room, watching my diet and things like that to keep my body healthy."
Foster said everyone on the team is playing really hard and pushing each other as well in practice every day. "No spot is guaranteed. Everyone has to work hard every practice. Raymond Cowels has also really stepped up his game this year. He has really worked on his ball handling and he will play an important role on this team this year," continued Foster.
Trasolini said the team is really focusing on rebounding this year in practice; and he looks for the team to be stronger offensively and defensively because it's what they are focusing on this year. "Coach Keating is really emphasizing rebounding in the early practices," said Trasolini. "Good defense is going to help us with our fast break on offense so it all fits together," added Trasolini.
2010-11 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason Coaches Poll
Team (First Place Votes) Points
1. Gonzaga (6) 48
2. Loyola Marymount (1) 42
3. Saint Mary's (1) 39
4. Santa Clara 28
5. Portland 25
6. San Francisco 18
7. Pepperdine 14
8. San Diego 10
2010-11 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team
Keion Bell, G, 6-3, Jr., Pepperdine University
Matthew Dellavedova, G, 6-4, So., Saint Mary's College
Kevin Foster, G, 6-2, So., Santa Clara University
Steven Gray, G, 6-5, Sr., Gonzaga University
Elias Harris, F, 6-7, So., Gonzaga University
Mickey McConnell, G, 6-0, Sr., Saint Mary's College
Jared Stohl, G, 6-2, Sr., University of Portland
Vernon Teel, G, 6-4, Sr., Loyola Marymount University
Marc Trasolini, F, 6-9, Jr., Santa Clara University
Drew Viney, F, 6-8, Jr., Loyola Marymount University