April 12, 2007
Senior tri-captain Kathrin Ress was selected by the Minnesota Lynx as the 24th overall pick in the 2007 Women's National Basketball Association Draft. Ress, a Salorno, Italy native, finished her career as BC's 10th all-time leading scorer with 1,300 points. She led the Eagles with 16.4 ppg and 8.4 rpg in her senior campaign.
Take us through draft day. What were your expectations?
The WNBA Draft officials invited me to the draft in Cleveland, so that is why I expected to get called in the early rounds. First, I was just taking it all in and waiting. I was expecting to get called, but there was still that tingling in my stomach from the excitement. It was a very exciting day.
What was your first reaction away from the cameras and press?
I said to myself, "Wow, this is really happening. I'm going to Minnesota." I felt joy and relief because all the work over the past years had come together for a result which was my dream.
Who did you call when you had a moment alone?
Well, my cell phone had a lot of messages and voicemails. I didn't really call anybody, but my parents reached me because I can't make international calls to home (Salorno, Italy). I talked to my parents and then I talked to my brother. It was nice to hear their voices and to hear how excited they were. They followed the draft over the internet but my brother went kind of crazy because during the draft the internet connection started breaking up. He called my parents so he could hear the draft, but he couldn't see anything, so I thought that was pretty funny.
Prior to the draft, you went through a couple days of training - what was that like being around all your peers, many friends - all competing for spots on WNBA rosters?
It was actually cool. The combine was set up nicely. They divided us up into teams and every practice we had a different team. We got to know different people, got to play with different people and show ourselves off in different situations. It was nice to meet these people that you see on TV and you've thought, "She seems like a cool girl and she's really good."
Have you spoken with any Lynx players - especially former BC guard Amber Jacobs?
Yes, I've talked to her. I called her the day of the draft and she was actually driving to Minnesota to get set up. I also talked to Tamika Williams, who played for Connecticut. She was at the draft and told me she was excited I was chosen to be part of the team. I'm going to talk to Amber again soon to get the run-down on what to expect and what's next. The first few days are going to be rough because of double sessions, but the coach is new, so it's probably going to be a lot of teaching for everyone. Everybody will kind of be in the same boat.
Can you tell us anything about the Minnesota Lynx as a team?
I know that they didn't do too well last year. They have Simone Augustus, who's a great player and they got the No. 1 pick this year, Lindsey Harding, so it's pretty exciting.
Talk about the chance to play with Lindsey Harding and last year's No. 1 pick Simone Augustus.
It's a great opportunity in terms of expanding my game and learning from them, even though we don't play the same position. Just getting the chance to be on that team and to play with some superstars is exciting.
What's next in terms of earning a spot on the roster?
I'll just keep doing my little things, staying in shape and working out. I'm going to go in with an open mind to learn as many things as I can. I'm going to try to be a sponge, taking in everything and hopefully satisfying the coaches and my teammates.
Talk about the whole Minnesota-BC connection - it's interesting that Craig Smith, Amber Jacobs and now you will all be in Minnesota.
It's pretty cool. Maybe we could have a little BC reunion. It's interesting because four years ago Amber went there, then two years ago Craig, then this year I'm going. It seems like every other year someone is going to go there. I think it'll be fun to have those people there. Knowing that they're in Minnesota and knowing them from BC will make me feel more comfortable, so it'll be an easier transition.
I understand you had a chance to play overseas, so why have you chosen to take a chance to play in the WNBA?
When I first came over here, playing overseas in Italy was my biggest dream. After coming over here, though, I thought the WNBA could be a big part of my dream. Over the years it kind of grew into being a goal. Overseas I am pretty much set, because I'm from Italy, so that will open many more doors.
How do you think your experience at BC has prepared you for the next step?
Every day in practice we had to come in with a strong mind. It wasn't all physical; many times it was about mental growth. Being here with my teammates and all the staff, it's been a great environment to learn and grow. I'm pretty sure it's prepared me enough.
What are some adjustments you might have to make in your game to compete at the highest level?
I'll probably need to get better in all the little aspects - getting more physical, being more versatile. There's always room for improvement. I'm open to learning anything and just get better as an individual and as a player.
Interview conducted by Geoffrey Kehlmann