Glidden featured in Pulaski Citizen article

Story courtesy of Paul Manke, Pulaski Citizen

Former Richland player succeeding at TTU

In her second year at Tennessee Tech University, Rachel Glidden went through a coaching change that left her as one of the older players on the team.

Glidden, a sophomore guard at Tennessee Tech, played high school ball at Richland.

The coaching change that brought Sylvia Messer to Tech as head coach also led to changes in the assistant coaching staff. Dee Bell, former Martin Methodist College coach, left the NAIA school to become an assistant coach at an NCAA Division I school.

Bell knew of Glidden, though the RedHawks did not recruit her since she was an early commitment to Tech.

“Rachel is a great kid and works really hard,” Bell said. “She is a standout in the weight room and has brought a great attitude through this transition.”

Tennessee Tech, whose women’s basketball program has one of the winningest traditions in Tennessee, finished 14-16 overall, 8-10 in the OVC. With a fourth place regular season finish in the OVC, Tennessee Tech advanced to the OVC tourney before falling to Austin Peay State University. The 14 wins were the most for TTU since the 2005-06 season.

OVC Foes

In the Ohio Valley Conference, Tennessee Tech plays Austin Peay, Eastern Kentucky, Eastern Illinois, Jacksonville State, Morehead State, Murray State University, Southeast Missouri State, Tennessee State University and the University of Tennessee-Martin.

Near the end of the 2009-10 season, Glidden, who averaged approximately 20 minutes a game, had 12 points in her team’s 68-60 win over Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. Always a good free throw shooter, Glidden hit 7-of-8 free throws.

She had 14 points in her team’s 72-69 win over Belmont University and another personal high, seven rebounds, in her team’s 78-70 loss at Austin Peay State University.

Last season Glidden averaged 7.3 points and 2.6 rebounds a game, up from 1.4 points and 0.7 rebounds her freshman season. She was the fourth leading scorer on the team. Glidden played almost 20 minutes a game, fifth highest on the team.

But, two years ago, when she came to Tech, Glidden did not expect to be one of the oldest players on the team her sophomore season. But, that’s what happened in the 2009-10 season.

Young Team

“All we had on the team were freshmen and sophomores,” Glidden said.

Glidden also shot 35 percent from the field and 33 percent from 3-point range, the fourth leading 3-point shooter on the team.

“That’s more because of who happens to be open than because of a set play,” she said.

Like many other players, Glidden noted the emphasis in college on playing defense. “I’ve got to get better on defense,” she said.

“I’ve got to work on pretty much everything,” she said. In college, she has worked to improve all parts of her game, which has helped her get more playing time.

At Richland, she earned several honors playing for coach Chad Hall, who has gone to Hazel Green, Ala.

High School Honors

Glidden scored 1,823 points, grabbed 480 rebounds and had 270 assists. She was the District Most Valuable Player in 2007 and 2008 and has earned all-region honors.

One of her favorite people is John Phillip Koons, her brother, to whom she dedicated her season last year. In the team’s media guide, her brother is pictured with her.

The daughter of Dorothy Koons, Glidden is majoring in occupational therapy. Partly inspired by her brother, two of her preferred career goals are to work with children with disabilities or in a hospital setting.

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