MOODY: Nash ready to make move to college in two sports
Whitney Nash has been a fixture on the Carson High basketball and golf teams the past four years.
Now, she’s looking forward to making the jump to the next level.
Nash is moving on to St. Catherine University, a Division III school in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. She will participate in both basketball and golf. The Minnesota university is an all-girls school.
“We talked to a recruiter who wanted to know if we wanted to pay to get my name in front of college coaches,” said Nash, who was an all-league selection in basketball this year and is the Carson record-holder for 3-point field goals made. “My family and I decided not to do it, but I guess my name was still out there.
“That’s how the coach (Gary Rufsvoid) heard about me I guess. He got a connection to the website that my dad had created for me. He started emailing us and then he came to see me play in Las Vegas (this past December). He watched me play and told me he was going to recruit me. He went back to school and told the golf coach about me.”
Rufsvoid obviously liked what he saw, especially at the offensive end.
“She shoots it very well,” Rufsvoid said. “We don’t have a lot of good shooters. We play in a very competitive 12-team league, and I was looking for people who could score. She’s going to have to adjust to a little more physical game and work on getting open.”
“He wants me to work on my athleticism, and getting that first quick step,” Nash said. “I’ve always had a hard time with that. He liked my shot. I think I can help them with my shooting.”
St. Catherine lost its top two scorers – Laura Kalbfell and Sonja Ellingson – to graduation. Megan Zillmer is the top returning score at 13 a game.
Carson coach Todd Ackerman said Nash had a nice career at Carson, and believes that the one thing she needs to work on is creating her own shot.
“I started doing that at the end of the year a little bit,” Nash said. “I should have been doing it at the start of the season. I know I’ll do it next year in college, and I’ll have more confidence to do it.”
Nash doesn’t play a spring sport, so she will continue to play with Jam On It, a Reno-based travel basketball team, and work with a personal trainer.
“I’ve been going to a personal trainer every week since ninth grade,” said Nash, who averaged 9.2 a game this year. “He helps me out with my strength and agility.”
Nash also will be a member of the St. Catherine golf team which will be starting its first season under Kris Wessinger.
Wessinger says she plans to carry 8 to 10 players, and that Nash already has a spot on the squad. How much Nash plays depends solely on her week-to-week progress, according to Wessinger.
“I saw her scores from her high school season,” Wessinger said. “She shoots in the 80s which is perfect for Division III. She should be good.”
Terry Gingell, Carson High golf coach, said he doesn’t see any reason why the left-handed Nash can’t be a player who shoots consistently in the 80s.
“Whitney has a great work ethic and a good attitude,” Gingell said. “I really feel when she fully commits to play a lot of golf I don’t see a downside to her game. As she plays more and practices more, her short game will improve.”
Nash will certainly play more golf, because in college the season is split into a fall season and a spring season. Nash would be with the golf team probably until early October when basketball practices officially start.
The Carson senior said she wanted to thank her dad, Wayne, and Ackerman and Gingell for their efforts during her time at Carson.