Rockets women's basketball opens practice

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TOLEDO (WTVG) - It's a brand new year for the Rockets.

But there is the challenge of taking that next step this season as they'll soon hang new banners at Savage Arena for winning the 2017 MAC Tournament and for the team's appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

"You've been there, you've tasted what it's like to go to the NCAA Tournament," Rockets head coach Tricia Cullop said. "As a coach, I knew what it felt like and I'm so glad that now our players do because now there's that extra motivation to try to get back."

Kaayla McIntyre is a returning center for UT as she enters her junior season.

"How we ended up, trying to put in more work and trying to improve where we finished last year, everyone is coming back," McIntyre said. "We have a lot of people who played a lot of minutes so we have to have new leaders and play a different role this year."

One new role off the court is the team's strength and condition coach. A new coach means a new and different routine in the weight room form the summer to today.

"He likes his squating," Rockets guard Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriott said. "I don't think I've done this many squats in my life. We've definately bumped up our weights and we're improving a lot in the weight room.

"We can fee the gains and I'm excited to see what we can do on the court because of that."

The first chance to see is Nov. 10, 2017 when the Rockets open the season at home against St. Francis University.