By Regina Jimenez
By Regina Jimenez
With the women’s 2005 basketball season at hand they seem to already be mentally prepared for this upcoming season.
“I want my players to focus on staying together as a team and as a family,” said coach Alicia Berber.
Coach Berber has been coaching for a total of seven years now going on eight. She has coached at RCC and Riverside Norte Vista High School in which she led the team to the playoffs. She was also a basketball athlete here at RCC from 1994-1996.
“This place is like a home-away-from-home for me,” she said. “It has always been my goal to come back and get an opportunity to coach the women’s basketball team.”
Coach Berber shares a great intensity with the game of basketball. She loves to coach young women and get them prepared for a higher level in college.
“As a kid I’ve always wanted to coach in the NBA,” she said. “If I got a chance to coach men I probably wouldn’t now because I’d much rather coach women because I can relate well with them and I have played at their level before. I’ve experienced everything they’re going through now as young ladies. And the biggest part is that I enjoy this too much to let go of coaching women’s basketball.”
Last year the women’s basketball team came out with an amazing record of 26-5 and were able to win the Orange Empire Conference Championship. Unfortunately they came up three games away from winning the State Championship.
“We need to work even harder than we did last year and just be consistent as we get better,” Berber said. “I want my team to really work and improve on their offense and just win games,” she said. “The returnees just have to step up their game and give it their all.”
Coach Berber loves her team and wants the best for them on and off the court.
“Community college basketball gives the ladies an opportunity to grow and mature,” she said. “It helps them develop life skills on and off the court as women and as athletes.”
This season coach Berber remains confident of her team which consists of eight sophomores and four freshman players who are said to be “a good group.” She expects the best from them and looks forward to a promising season.
Berber has been around the game of basketball for a long time and knows what it’s like to not only coach but to be an athlete and be a part of a team.
She has many great memories as an athlete and a coach.
“As a college player one of my greatest memories is just getting the opportunity to play college ball,” she said. “As for coaching, every team is different and they all leave you with different but great memories but I would have to say winning the Sequoia’s tournament was one of the greatest because the last time we won in this tournament was in 1987.” Berber does not only enjoy seeing her players successful in basketball but she also enjoys seeing them become successful in life.
“It is rewarding to get to see my girls move on and get their college degrees. There is so much competiveness,” she said. “They’re like daughters to me; we are basically like family.”
With Berber’s mentality and trust in her team the Tigers will be very successful this season.
“We just need to give 110 percent, be consistent, and work hard and we will have a successful season,” Berber said.