La-Force Names Captains for 2016-17 Season

La-Force Names Captains for 2016-17 Season

KINGSTON, R.I. – Rhode Island Head Coach Daynia La-Force announced that juniors Charise Wilson, Morgan Johnson and Tyler Raysor will serve as the women's basketball team captains for the 2016-17 season.

"Being a leader starts way before we step on the floor. It's what happens behind the scenes - in the classroom and in the community," La-Force said. "Charise, Morgan and Tyler all work hard in the classroom and have put forth the effort to volunteer in the community.

"Charise's exploits on the court have naturally turned her into a leader. Morgan's ability to lead by example with her success in the classroom and as a vocal leader on the floor, and Tyler's undeniable passion for the game and talent to pick those up around her give us the right combination of leadership we need moving forward."

This year's captains were decided in a player-only vote. The staff and players worked together to determine the definition of a captain before the vote was conducted.

"Being a team captain means you take on an extra level of responsibility for the Rhode Island Rams Women's Basketball Team," the definition stated. "Team captains work harder than anyone else, encourage their teammates, are honest and trustworthy, respect others, care passionately about others, and are relentlessly competitive and compelled to win. A team captain is humble, putting the teams' needs before anything else. They accept this level of responsibility and do whatever is needed for the team to thrive.  

"Team captains are dependable; a constant extension of the coach- excelling in the classroom, in the community, and on the court. Team captains have a winning mentality. They exude enough confidence that it carries over to every other player on the team. Not only do they practice what they preach, but they ask their teammates to do the same."

Wilson – who has established herself as one of the best players in program history – has 999 career points, 260 rebounds, 205 assists, 118 steals and 144 3-pointers in just two seasons. An Atlantic 10 Second Team All-Conference selection last season, Wilson was the league's Rookie of the Year as a freshman. She also has started all 60 possible games in her career.

"Charise is the unquestioned leader for us on the court," La-Force said. "She not only has established herself as one of the best players in the conference, but in the country as well. She is a special talent who plays with a toughness and determination few players anywhere can match."

Johnson, who redshirted in her first year, is entering her fourth season with Rhode Island. Last season, she established her role on the team and was one of five players to appear in all 30 games. 

"Morgan Johnson is the consummate teammate who has been with Rhode Island for four years," La-Force said. "Her experience with the program provides the leadership we need."

Despite being limited to 17 games by injuries in her first two seasons, Raysor's strong personality has enabled her to emerge as a leader for the team. La-Force expects Raysor's on-court presence to emerge in 2016-17, as the powerful forward has the ability to be a difference maker against A-10 competion.

"Tyler Raysor is the emotional center for the team, a woman who has the ability to rally everyone around her," La-Force said. "She has the ability to boost everyone's confidence and energy level with her love of the game. She also is a fierce competitor who plays with an edge that is vital for any successful team."

Rhode Island opens the season Friday, Nov. 11 at Syracuse, last season's national runner-up. The teams also met in the 2015-16 opener in which Syracuse rallied late to pull out a 57-54 win over the Rams.

The complete 2016-17 schedule will be announced at a later date.