Ordinarily, a four-game upswing in the win column would be cause for delight. But even after rebounding from a 6-9 overall record in 2011 to go 10-6 this past season, St. Mary’s isn’t fully satisfied with the program’s growth.
In fact, coach Chris Hasbrouck said the coaches and players won’t be content until they break the seal and capture the program’s first appearance in the NCAA tournament.
“They’re not going to be satisfied until we make the tournament,” he said. “That’s what they’ve put on themselves, and I wholeheartedly agree. If anything, our expectations are that we’re going to make the NCAA tournament. That’s what we’re working for and planning on. I think the bar is there. Now it’s time for us to step over it. That’s what we have to do.”
The past spring’s rebound had as much to do with the team’s execution as it did with a run of injuries that plagued last year’s squad. But as much as that hampered that 2011 campaign, the players were steaming about the substandard season.
“I think after the 2011 year, the guys felt it was unacceptable to them,” Hasbrouck said. “That was the main thing that took place. It takes a long time to build a top, quality program with the depth and the athletes, and that’s what we’ve been all working on. The players have been getting better, and we’ve been recruiting hard in the offseason, and that stuff is paying off.”