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Minot State women’s basketball emphasizing recruiting local talent

MINOT, N.D. (KMOT) – In Head Coach Mike Brandt’s third season in Minot, the Minot State women’s basketball team is making a push to dominate the North Dakota recruiting scene.

This year the Beavers boast local players including Amya Gourneau from Belcourt, Mia Aberle from Surrey, Lorelei McIver from Glenburn, and Maya Aguilar from Minot.

The team also has players from Fargo, Mandan, and Watford City. It’s all part of Coach Brandt’s plan.

“Any time you’re at a university, especially a state university, you want to work from the inside out. The area, there’s good quality players. We want to try to get them. We want to be competitive, we want to win. But that’s our first stop, getting good, local players in. You need an influx of different players from different areas and even different areas of the world. But we want to do our community and university a favor by recruiting locally initially,” said Brandt.

For some players, it takes getting used to playing alongside their former rivals.

But players say they enjoy having old opponents as teammates.

“My team is amazing. I love the girls so much. Coaches, they’re always there. They’re there for you to talk to, not even just about basketball but anything. It’s just nice to know that you have that support and family outside of classes and basketball,” said Lorelei McIver, a sophomore who graduated from Glenburn in 2022.

“I’ve played with them so many times in different tournaments. Playing against them even, it’s a bond that’s always been there. It’s friendly competition. It’s fun to finally play with them now and be on the same team. I really love it, honestly,” said Maya Aguilar, a freshman who graduated from Minot High in 2023.