HAGERSTOWN — Vicky Bullett isn’t much for labels.
There are a lot of descriptions that will be cropping up as Bullett takes over as Hagerstown Community College’s women’s basketball coach, replacing Marlys Palmer who retired after 32 years on the job.
The only thing that “new” and “change” mean to Bullett is the team’s uniforms, and “transition” is the style of play she will be teaching. The significance is a little more basic.
“I’m really excited,” Bullett said. “When I saw the players coming in, it’s going to be different. It is something that we will have to start.”
“Start” is on so many levels for HCC, starting with Bullett’s first recruiting class. The Hawks unveiled their new recruiting class of 11 players who will be the starting point of the next generation of women’s basketball at the school.
HCC will have only two returning players — Smithsburg’s Katie Sprecher and Boonsboro’s Ashley Smothers. Everyone else will be as green as the school’s uniform colors.
“This is a new start,” Bullett said. “I always wanted to coach. I have been teaching and coaching AAU ball. Now, I want a place to be at. This is a start.”
It is pretty much a theme for Bullett’s new team. They are all new. They are all finding a place. They all want to start the next step in their careers.
“I was looking at other options, but this was the one that fit best,” said Katie Connelly of Broadfording Christian Academy. “Coach Bullett has played at all different levels and she knows a lot. This is a fresh start for me and for the school.”
Adding Bullett is a huge step for HCC. Her story is almost legend.
Bullett is a Martinsburg High School graduate who starred at Maryland before playing for two U.S. Olympic teams, the WNBA and professionally overseas. But when it was time to quit playing, she wanted to come home and she wanted to coach.
HCC and her first recruiting class will benefit.
Connelly is the only Washington County player in the recruiting class. Area fans might recognize the names of Deidre Burch (Berkeley Springs) and Tyana Monette (Hedgesville).
The rest of the class is made up of players Bullett searched for to fit the up-tempo style she wants to play.
They include Miesha Adams (North Pointe), Gabby Comfort (Fredericksburg Christian, Alyssa Fort (Westlake), Sierra Leacock (James Monroe), Kristine Mstowski (Covenant Life), Sasha Orr (Seneca Valley), Tierra Taylor (Western) and Tiffany Wallace (National Christian Academy).
“This is very exciting,” Connelly said. “(Bullett) wants me to shoot, run the floor and lead fast breaks. She is changing the schedule and making it tougher. I’m really looking forward to it.”
So is Bullett. She has grand plans for the team and how it is going to fit in the community.
It will take a little time though.
“It’s a transition,” Bullett said. “Every coach who comes into a job wants to teach their own style and technique. With 11 freshmen, we have a lot to teach.
“You want to get their attention and show them how things are going to go. You demand expectations. But you can only present 50 percent of it. They have to come out and give the other 50 percent.”