By Rodney McKissic
The Niagara University women’s basketball team will enter next season minus three major contributors.
Starters Lauren Gatto and Kayla Stroman reserve Shy Britton will not return to the team, Niagara athletic department spokesman Derick Thornton confirmed on Tuesday.
Gatto and Stroman both received their degrees this month while Britton was dismissed from the team for a violation of the school’s student athlete’s code of conduct.
The 6-foot-2 Gatto will be difficult to replace. The Illinois-Chicago transfer led the team in scoring (14.0), rebounding (6.2) and field-goal percentage (49.0 percent). She graduated with a master’s degree in business management and had a year of eligibility remaining.
Stroman, who also earned a business management degree, was a fixture at point guard in her three-plus seasons at Niagara. She started all 31 games as a freshman before her sophomore season was cut short by a knee injury. Stroman, who had one season of eligibility remaining, started the next 63 games of her career, including 31 last season when she averaged 6.6 points and a team-high 4.0 assists.
Britton saw action in 30 games last season and started five while averaging 6.5 points and 3.2 rebounds.