By Jerry Del Priore
After playing for Queens College, Canarsie, Brooklyn resident Twanda Holder decided to transfer to Brooklyn College three games into her sophomore year because she didn’t favor the coach’s teaching style, as well as not seeing much court time.
“I transferred from Queens College because I felt like me and the coach weren’t on the same page,” Holder explained. “A lot of times I didn’t like the way that she sort of went about things. It wasn’t the kind of coaching style I was really comfortable with. She was a very aggressive person, and I’m the type of person that needs to be talked to and needs a lot of support.
“Coach Alex (Lang) does those things, so I’m happy here.”
The 5’ 7” junior guard didn’t see much hardwood action last year as well because of the late transfer but has made most of her playing time this season, averaging 7.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, along with 41 steals in 29 contests, 26 of which she started.
Holder began to get serious about hoops at the age of 13, a little late for most basketball players, she said. But she tried out for James Madison High School’s basketball team and said she was a bit green at first.
However, Holder said she worked tirelessly to overcome her lack of experience and talent, with the help of current Lady Golden Knights’ coach Richard Tighe.
“I am not going to lie; I came into my high school career very scrubish,” Holder admitted. “I wasn’t the best player and didn’t get a lot of minutes initially, but as the years went on, I definitely progressed my game. And I was very serious about working to become an impact player on the court. My high school coach was also very supportive of me.”
Moreover, it was Holder’s spirited nature and intense drive to improve that helped her make up ground on the competition. In her senior season at Madison, it paid off, as she led the team in scoring, averaging 15.8 points per game, and posted a club-high 12 points in the Lady Golden Knights’ 37-36 victory over Bronx High School of Science in the first round of the Class ‘A’ 2012-13 playoffs.
On the heels of helping the Lady Bulldogs defeat CSI in the ECAC Metro/Upstate finals with a 6- point, 8 rebound performance Sunday at home, Lang believes Holder will get even better with more experience as she keeps fine-tuning her aggressive style of play into the Lady Bulldogs’ team approach.
“Twanda is someone who has a ton of athleticism and a drive to be great,” he wrote on Brooklyncollegeathletics.com. “With more experience and a greater understanding of how to fit her game into the team dynamic, she’ll continue to grow into a tremendous talent.”
As for her own basketball future, the early childhood special education major said, “At the end of the day, as long as my team gets the W, I feel points don’t really play a factor, because I like to help across the board,” Holder said. “I like to help on the defensive end, I like to grab rebounds and I like to get steals. I like to help my teammates score, so the points that I score aren’t important to me.”
It’s a true, selfless mark of any athlete, and person, for that matter, who’s finally coming into their own.