De Montfort Students' Union’s women’s basketball team, the 'Pitbulls', are looking to avenge last year’s defeat and reclaim their Varsity mantle.
Things are starting to shape up nicely for the Pitbulls, with added training sessions – including team runs though the park – improving their fitness levels and, just as importantly, bringing team members closer together as club chair Paige Caldeira explained.
She said: “Fitness is our main thing. Also we have normal training sessions where we focus on ball handling and things like that, but mainly fitness is what we’re working on.
“We also need to learn how to each other as that’s the only way we’re going to be able to do it.
“Everyone’s becoming more of a team so it’s all going really well.”
Despite having endured a tough season, Paige is confident that her team can come out on top come Varsity, using the disappointment of a hard season as motivation to make the year a memorable one regardless of league positions.
“You’ve always got to be confident. Whether you think you are going to win or lose you’ve always got to be confident that you’re going to win.
“Sadly we haven’t been doing that well this year, but that’s why we’re putting all our energy into Varsity to try and win that.”
Paige, a Creative Writing and Journalism student, said that the atmosphere at all fixtures, not least her own, plays an important role in not only spurring competitors on but in bringing students closer together under the #TeamDMU banner.
She said: “It’s really good, you actually feel like you’re in the NBA. Loads of people are there, everybody’s cheering and everyone’s so supportive.
“It sums up community, all of us coming together, whether you play rugby, American football, whether you cheer, we all come together and celebrate one big thing as a big De Montfort family.
“It’s a good way to celebrate the end of the year, and would be amazing to win, the greatest thing ever, especially because it is my last year here.”
As our sides bid for glory and the all-important local bragging-rights, the mood around campus has become more buoyant in the weeks and days leading up to the main body of fixtures. Confidence is sky-high among Demons across the university, and Paige emphatically underlined this with an assured statement.
She said: “We are going to win this. Hands down we will win Varsity 2016!”
You can catch the women's basketball fixture on Saturday 5 March at 2:00pm at the Danielle Brown Sports Centre. Click here for the full list of Varsity fixtures and get behind #TeamDMU.