Bouldin continues to shine in her sophomore season at UTC
By Andy Southard | July 5, 2018 5:53 am
When a person thinks of standout basketball players from Van Buren County High School, there is usually one name that will come to mind, Lakelyn Bouldin.
Bouldin, a 2016 graduate of VBHS, came out of high school as one of the most prolific players to ever play at VBHS. In her senior season, Bouldin was named Miss Basketball, District 6A MVP, Player of the Year in 6A, Region 3A MVP, All-State, and she also set the school record for the most points scored in a career with 2,948 career points.
Bouldin would then sign with the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. In her freshman season at UTC, Bouldin would put her name on the map as one of the top freshman players in UTC history. Bouldin would burst on to the scene for the UTC Lady Mocs. Bouldin would finish the season third on the team in scoring, and she would break the school record for most threes as a freshman in a season.
When Bouldin was asked if playing a lot as a freshman helped prepare her for her sophomore season, she had this to say.
“I think getting to play a lot as a freshman definitely helped prepare me for this past season,” she said. “I was able to take the experience and knowledge I gained from my freshman season and grow and improve as a player.”
In Bouldin’s sophomore season, the SoCon coaches named her to the All-Southern Conference Third Team. She would finish the season third in scoring, averaging 12.4 points per game, and she would lead the Southern Conference in 3-point field goal percentage at 39 percent. She would finish the season leading the Lady Mocs and finishing third in 3-point field goals made with 62. Bouldin’s best game of the season came against Hampton, where she would lead the team with 32 points. She would also play and start in 28 regular season games.
When asked how her sophomore season went, she had this to say.
“Despite all of the challenges our team faced throughout the season, I think my sophomore season went well,” she said. “We had a lot of players to get sick, and, at one point, it felt like we were almost plagued by injuries. There was a point in the season where we only had seven or eight players available to play due to sickness and injuries. I can say that I grew a lot as a person and a player during my sophomore season. I had to make even more adjustments than I did as a freshman because our opponents, especially in our conference, knew what I could do and what I was best at.”
With Bouldin’s sophomore season in the books, she is now looking to next season. This offseason, Bouldin found out that her head coach, Jim Foster, had stepped down. Foster was a Hall of Fame women’s basketball coach, with over 900 wins in 40 seasons.
Taking Foster’s place will be longtime assistant coach Katie Burrows. Burrows has been an assistant coach at UTC for the past eight seasons. Burrows served on staffs for both Wes Moore and Jim Foster. During her career at UTC, the team has advanced to the postseason eight times, with five trips to the NCAA Tournament following five Southern Conference titles.
“There will be a lot of changes take place since Coach Foster has stepped down,” said Bouldin. “It is going to be a pretty big adjustment for sure, but he has left us in good hands. The team is excited to be playing under Coach Katie Burrows, and I think it will be a fun year for our team. We will miss Coach Foster, no doubt. He is very wise and knowledgeable about the game of basketball.”
The Mocs posted an impressive overall record of 255-95, and a 160-34 mark in league play during her time as an assistant.
When asked about her thoughts on her new coach, she had this to say, “I think coach Katie will do a great job as head coach. It will take a little while for everyone to get acquainted with her coaching style and how she wants us to play, but I am looking forward to playing for her. With her being an assistant coach for Coach Foster, she already knows all of the players on a personal level, as well as what we can do on the floor. This will make the transition to a new coach a lot easier. She has coached under two great head coaches, Coach Foster and Coach Moore, so she knows what she is talking about, and it should be a fun season.”
In her third season, Bouldin will look to improve on an already impressive freshman and sophomore season and try to win a SoCon Conference title.