With the college basketball season just around the corner, the time has officially come to take a deeper look at the 2021-22 Duke women's basketball roster. The Blue Zone has you covered with player previews for each member of the team. To begin, we look at Jiselle Havas:
2019-20 statline: 2.2 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 0.5 APG (Lafayette College)
Game breakdown: As will be endlessly referenced when discussing Duke women’s basketball this season, last season's early termination will be a big factor in the team's 2021-22 outlook. Havas, a senior guard from Windermere, Fla., enters this campaign with something to prove as last year's walk-on transfer from Lafayette has yet to register a minute for the Blue Devils despite arriving before the 2020-2021 season.
Havas played an important role for the Leopards in her first two collegiate seasons, with her career-high 15 points and game-tying free throw against Monmouth her freshman year serving as a notable high point. The senior guard has also proven to be a solid rebounder and reliable free-throw shooter, as her 49 rebounds and 71.4% free-throw shooting in her sophomore season are both particularly impressive.
Predicting how newcomers to the program will fare is always difficult, but the challenge Havas faces should be a simple matter of performing when it counts. Missing out on the few games Duke played last year has given her more time to prepare and familiarize herself with the program, so the next step for Havas is to translate team chemistry into court dominance. Havas has experience and the skill to match; with luck, her upward trajectory will continue this season as she makes up for lost time.
Role on the team: It’s unclear exactly what role Havas will play this season for the Blue Devils, if for no other reason than a lack of evidence. NCAA transfer policies prevented her from playing in Duke’s opening four games last season before the program opted out, meaning it’s been almost two years since Havas last played an official game. As a walk-on transfer, though, it’s likely that her role will be as more of an impact substitute or rotational player who can score in short bursts of playing time.
Fortunately, Havas enters this season with a blank slate. She has perhaps flown under the radar when compared to the Blue Devils’ longer-established players, but this freshness could prove helpful in Havas' Duke debut as she looks to make a name for herself as a key part of Duke's experienced, talented roster.
It’s a fresh—albeit belated—start for Havas. The college basketball world is her oyster; now, it’s just a matter of seizing it.
Projected stats: 0 PPG, 0 RPG, 0.1 MPG
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Andrew Long is a Trinity junior and sports editor of The Chronicle's 119th volume.