2003 Record
19-15, .559
(3rd in West)

Points Scored
2299 (8th overall, 4th in West)
Points Allowed
2216 (4th overall, 2nd in West)
Scoring Differential
+2.4 (4th overall, 3rd in West)

Offensive Efficiency
96.0 (12th overall, 5th in West)
Defensive Efficiency
92.4 (1st overall, 1st in West)
Possessions per 40 min.
70.2 (4th overall, 3rd in West)
What are these stats?

Award Winners & Honorees
All-Stars
Ticha Penicheiro

2003 Draft Recap
Rd. 1 – 2, Chantelle Anderson

Playoff History
Four times in seven years
Last Appearance
2003, lost in Western Finals
2003 In Review:
What Went Right?

John Whisenant began his reign (pun intended) over the Monarchs 19 games into the season replacing Maura McHugh. Sacramento’s record stood at 8-11 at the time of the coaching chance, but they finished the season winning 11 of their last 15 games advancing to the Western Conference Championship before falling to the Los Angeles Sparks. Whisenant had a positive effect on both sides of the ball increasing team scoring from 66.9 points per game to 68.5, and reducing opposition scoring from 66.3 points per game to 63.7.

Lawson
Nobody benefited from the coaching change more than rookie Kara Lawson. Over the team’s first 19 games, Lawson averaged 5.8 points per game, connecting on 33.3 percent of her field goal attempts and 29.4 percent of her three-pointers. After the change, she chipped in with 10.2 points per game and connected on 45.5 percent of her field goal attempts and 50.7 percent of her three-pointers.

Tenacious D – the Monarchs improved from the third worst defense in the league in 2002 to the best in the league in 2003. Sacramento had 50 more steals in 2003 than they did a year ago, and forced 80 more turnovers. Monarch opponents’ shooting percentages all dropped from a year ago as well.

Edna Campbell played all 34 games for the Monarchs a year after being diagnosed with breast cancer. She averaged 7.9 points per game, hitting 41.4 percent of her three-pointers on the year.

Head Coach
John Whisenant
2003 Starting Line-up
GTicha Penicheiro
GEdna Campbell
CYolanda Griffith
FTangela Smith
FDeMya Walker
Key 2003 Reserves
GRuthie Bolton
FLady Grooms
GKara Lawson

What Went Wrong?

Sacramento finished with the third worst offense in the league last season, connecting on just 40.9 percent of its field goal attempts and 31.7 percent of its three-pointers.

A number of preseason articles were written a year ago about how much Ticha Penicheiro had worked on her jumpshot in the offseason. Adding some scoring punch to her already impressive passing abilities would do wonders for the Monarchs. Unfortunately, whatever Penicheiro did to work on her shot, didn’t take. She hit just 30.2 percent of her field goal attempts in 2003 – the third lowest percentage of any player in the WNBA that played at least 400 minutes.

Yolanda Griffith’s role in the Monarchs offense was lessened after the coaching change. Prior to the change, she was averaging 16.2 points per game and taking just over 11 shots per game. Under Whisenant, she averaged 10.8 points per game and took just under eight shots per game. Her rebound average also dropped from 8.7 per game to 5.5.

Looking Ahead To 2004:
Key Questions

Griffith
Can last year’s second overall pick in the draft, Chantelle Anderson, bounce back after a difficult rookie campaign? She averaged just 1.6 points per game, hit just 43.4 percent of her field goal attempts and played just 171 minutes the entire regular season. Meanwhile, the player taken right after her in the draft, Cheryl Ford, averaged a double-double and helped lead Detroit to the WNBA Championship.

Can Yolanda Griffith reverse what has become a downward offensive trend for her over the past few years? Her field goal percentage has dropped in each of her years in the league; her 13.8 points per game last year was her lowest scoring average as a pro; and after averaging double-figure rebounds in each of her first three seasons in the league, she grabbed just 7.3 rebounds per game in 2003.

Where does the offensive help come from? Sacramento’s Offensive Efficiency Rating has dropped in each of the past three seasons. In 2000 and 2001, the Monarchs were six percent better than the league average and ranked second in the WNBA both seasons. In 2002, they were 13th out of 16 teams, three percent worse than the league average, when Griffith and Penicheiro missed a number of games due to injury, and in 2003, they were 12th out of 14 teams and two percent worse then the league average despite Griffith and Penicheiro being in the lineup the entire season.