Gerber provides early-season spark for Pitt State women

PITTSBURG, Kan. – Pitt State sophomore forward Karenna Gerber is showing her potential to be one of the best in the MIAA through the team’s first eight games.

“She’s always been aggressive. She’s always had great hands. She’s always been able to run and all of those things, but when it comes together, that’s what you’re seeing right now,” says Pitt State head coach Amanda Davied, “Her basketball IQ is really coming along. She knows where she needs to be and she gets what’s going on.”

Gerber is averaging 16.8 points and 8.1 rebounds per game so far this season, including three double-doubles.

It’s a nice jump from her freshman season when she averaged 7 points and 5.7 rebounds per night.

She credits her off-season work and gaining experience last year for her early-season success in year two.

“I think last year gave me a little cushion year almost to keep building off of, and I kind of know what to expect now. I think it gave me something to work on over the summer,” Gerber says, “That’s kind of what I tried to do in the off-season, just work on what I needed to. Being more physical and building confidence and just getting more shots and reps was a big part of it. I did a lot of lifting and stuff to get stronger. There’s some pretty good posts in the MIAA, so I have to be able to hold my ground.”

“Karenna has always been bought in, but I think she just understands the offense more,” Davied adds, “That freshman year is tough. You feel like you’re in the hamster wheel trying to catch up all the time and learn the plays. Just a year of confidence can make a big difference. I think that’s a big part of it.”

Gerber has been great all season for Pitt State – but has really been key in the team’s first three MIAA conference games.

Gerber is averaging 20 points and nearly 10 rebounds per game to begin league play, helping the Gorillas go 2-1 against their first three MIAA opponents. She recorded 20 points, 17 rebounds and 7 blocks last Thursday against Missouri Western in her most productive game of the season.

“I think we’ve been very intentional about getting her the basketball. I think our guards really trust her,” Davied says, “Sometimes guards don’t like to give it up, but I think right now our girls really enjoy giving her the basketball and watching her finish plays.”

“We do a lot of pick-and-roll stuff in practice. We get a lot of reps,” Gerber says about working with the guards, “I’m probably a little faster than some of these guards. If I do my job and set a good screen and roll hard, they’ll get me the ball. We have some really good passers on our team, so that really helps.”

Gerber and the Gorillas will be back in action on Wednesday night, on the road against Newman.


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