Eugene, Ore. -- Lane women’s basketball may be the best team you haven’t heard of.
“A lot of people say if you can pay for Sheley you can play everywhere,” said freshman guard Megan Fossen
The top-ranked Titans are in their 18th consecutive winning season. Head coach Greg Sheley is the mastermind behind it all.
“We constantly talk about the target on our back because again fortunately we’ve had the target on our back for over a decade now,” said Sheley.
Five conference championships in 20 years. That’s the same amount as the Oregon and Oregon State women’s teams combined.
“I come from a winning program,” said guard Emma Jones. “I didn’t want to step into somewhere I didn’t get playing time or the team wouldn’t win as often.”
It’s not an easy thing to do when you’re a junior college in an area where Ducks and Beavers remain king. Sheley pitches opportunity.
“We just try to get the best available players,” said Sheley. “We’re not in a situation where we can offer full rides. So, we can say, ‘hey I need a point guard that can do X, Y and Z.’ Heck if I can get five point guards that’d be awesome. If I can get five 6-2 kids that’d be awesome.”
Sheley’s goal is to mold good players into great ones.
“I definitely feel like we definitely run as if we are not just a JUCO level,” said Fossen. “We have to come with the mindset that we got to win and keep this high expectation.”
A sixth championship is not just another banner, but another step in making Lane a household name.
“I think we are one of 3 or 4 teams that are capable of doing it,” said Sheley. “It just continues to allow us to recruit well when you can say every three or four years, we’re going to win one.”