October 16, 2003
Scales expected to play major role for Lady Tigers
After watching 5-foot-8 freshman point guard Ariana Scales score 60 points in the two games played against her Wabash Valley College team last season, new Cowley County Community College women’s basketball coach Stephanie Smith could not pass up the opportunity to have Scales play for the Lady Tigers.
Scales, who was an all-state performer her senior year at Topeka West High School, and holds the school record for career points, assists, and field goal percentage, was recruited by Smith, but ended up going to Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Mo.
At Jefferson, Scales flourished on the basketball court, averaging 20 points, six assists, five steals and four rebounds per game in her one season at the school. However, she struggled academically at Jefferson.
Scales’ academic struggles appear to be a thing of the past as she posted a 3.7 grade-point average while taking 11 hours of classes this summer at Cowley.
“I knew I could do it if I really wanted to,” Scales said. “At Jefferson, the coaches didn’t really care about our grades, but here the coaches care. It’s nice to know that the coaches here really care about you.”
After scoring 32 and 28 points in a pair of close defeats to Smith’s Wabash Valley College team, Scales was hoping to get another chance at playing for the new Cowley coach.
“I was hoping this year she was not going to let me get away,” Scales said. “I saw the success her team had at Wabash, and I really like her as a coach, so I am excited to be playing for her.”
Smith is equally excited about having Scales at Cowley.
“She is one of the best guards in Kansas,” Smith said. “She can control the point guard position, but can also put points on the board.”
Scales is just one of the new faces in the Lady Tiger program. She believes the squad has the potential to be very good if it can form good team chemistry.
“We are a very athletic team, we have just got to all get on the same page,” Scales said. “I expect to be a leader on this team, and hope to help us get to the national tournament.”
Smith envisions those same things.
“In order for us to win a championship we need to have her step up and be a team leader,” Smith said. “She’s got a good head for the game.”
Besides excelling on the basketball court, Scales was part of a state champion soccer team her junior year of high school, and she also placed third in the 4x100-meter relay at the state track meet as a senior.
Scales is planning on majoring in health and education, and hopes to become a coach someday. However, she first wants to compete for an NCAA Division I basketball program next season, and then hopes to play in the WNBA or possibly overseas.