Steenholdt’s assault on BigV



By Sam Darroch

LATROBE City Energy’s star signing Shanice Steenholdt has been on fire since stepping foot in the Powerhouse this season.

The United States import was named BigV division one player of the month for May, when she averaged 24.6 points per game and an incredible 20 rebounds per game in five appearances for the orange nation.

She recorded three 20-20 games in a 4-1 run for Energy during that period and has been the backbone of the side’s offence since coming in as a late replacement for original import Jasmine Hunt, who went home injured early this season.

Remarkably those numbers were not limited to a five-game stretch; the former Houston Baptist University Huskies captain has near identical season averages of 24.5ppg and 20.1rpg this season.

Coach Andrew Harlow said Steenholdt had hit the ground running in a big way to help Energy build towards a playoffs campaign.

“She’s been unbelievable, she’s fitted straight in and just gone bang,” Harlow said.

“We set a couple of goals for her at the start of the season and she’s exceeded those, now we’re just re-planning a couple of goals to keep that momentum flying.

“We did aim at the double-double, we sort of said that was a requirement we’d like her to fill each week, but she’s taken that ball and just run around with it.

“She gets recognition around the league; people start looking at her, which opens up some of the other players around her.”

With a double-double to her name in every game this season, Steenholdt has been a revelation.

Wearing basketball’s famous number 23, with on court tallies worthy of the man who wore it best – Michael Jordan, Steenholdt put her success down to her own set of ‘Scottie Pippens’.

“People are always like “you’re the double-double machine” but if it weren’t for my teammates setting me up on the plays we run and everybody boxing out (it wouldn’t happen). Sometimes I just feel like I’m in the right place at the right time on the rebounds,” she said.

“The girls have been very welcoming since the start and it kind of makes things a lot easier when you have people so open to you being on their team.

“If I can continue to push my teammates and they can continue to push me and we can stay on this route, get good chemistry going and continue to play well together, we’ll be unstoppable.”

Learning what she can and can’t get away with has been the biggest on-court adjustment to date, but Steenholdt seems to have a good feel for it and is yet to foul out of a game.

Despite racking up big numbers week in, week out, Steenholdt was adamant there was always room for improvement.

“I think I’m doing well, I have some things to work on personally; I think I can be a little more active on the defensive end and I’m always looking to improve,” she said.

“I’m excited, I’m happy to be playing well and I just hope to continue to contribute.”

Steenholdt’s tenure at Energy will end in August at the conclusion of the season, although she tells her friends and family back home she’s having too much fun to leave, but she won’t be content to board the flight without a championship.

“We’re looking to win a championship, that’s our main goal,” she said.

“We’re just excited to continue with the rest of the season. We’re all on the same page with it and it’s good to be part of a team that’s excited to win games and comes out every night, puts everything on the floor and leaves it on the floor.”

Energy plays top two side Geelong this weekend.