Taylor Hosendive is transforming the Georgia State Panthers women’s basketball team

During a season riddled with injuries, Taylor Hosendove has been a positive force for the struggling women’s basketball team.

The former transfer student is leading the team offensively, averaging a team-high 11.2 and nine rebounds. and 1.75 assists per game (second on the team). She has also been a force on the backboard, averaging nine rebounds per game, which also leads the team. 

“Coming in as a transfer student, I didn’t really think I was going to be able to play. When I found out that I was eligible to play, I just wanted to work really hard and make an impact wherever I could,” Hosendove said.

Hosendove is also shooting 42.7% on the season, which is second on the team only behind starting center Shaquanda Miller-Mccray.

With multiple starters and rotations out for the season with injuries, Hosendove made an immediate impact, becoming a leader on the floor for a young team rather quickly, which has been a challenge she has not shied away from and even led her to be recognized for multiple awards. 

“I don’t mind the pressure; it just brings out my competitive spirit,” Hosendove said. “I try to come to every game ready to play hard and get better with my teammates.” 

That same competitive spirit is what earned Hosendove both Georgia State student-athlete of the week and Sun Belt Conference player of the week during early February. During that week, she averaged 20.5 points and 9.5 rebounds, earning the Panther’s two wins. This would ultimately help fuel a four-game win streak overall giving the team much-needed confidence as tournament play draws nearer.

Despite Hosendove’s strong individual performances, the season hasn’t yielded much winning largely due to the inexperience of the team. Currently, there are seven freshmen and four sophomores on the team. This inexperience, paired with the multitude of injuries, has created many challenges for head coach Gene Hill.

“When your back is up against the wall, whether it’s due to injuries or other things, players have to make a choice to step up or not,” Hill said. “I think we saw some success there in the middle of conference play where we really stepped up to the challenge and won some games despite not having everyone healthy.”

Hill was alluding to the four-game win streak that has propelled the Panthers to have a chance during the conference tournament. Although the season hasn’t lived up to its potential, Hosendove is excited about the direction of the team and the development of some of her younger teammates, including one who shares the same first name.

“Taylor Henderson has done a great job as a freshman stepping in and making an immediate impact in the game,” Hosendove said. “She has a lot of potential, and I’m looking forward to building a legacy with her here at [Georgia State].” 

Henderson has been another bright spot for the Panthers this season since she was elevated to a starting role due to injuries. She is leading the team in assists per game with 1.77 and second in points per game with 9.7. 

With conference tournament play right around the corner, it will be imperative for the Panther’s dynamic pair of Taylors to continue elevating their game if they wish to make a run in the postseason. 

“As a team, we’re excited we had a couple of wins back-to-back which has helped our team morale,” Hosendove said. “We just want to get some more wins to solidify our place in the tournament.”

The regular season will come to a close for the Panthers this Saturday against in-state rival Georgia Southern. The Eagles will be traveling to the GSU Sports Arena looking to follow up their earlier season win against Georgia State where they defeated the Panthers 81-56 in Statesboro. 

Many of the athletes on the team are native Georgians, including Hosendove, a graduate of Westlake High School where she led her team to a 30-2 record as a senior. Home state pride is important to most athletes who call the Peach State home, and Hosendove was no exception.

“I love in-state rivalries. Rivalries help bring students and athletes together for an ultimate show of school spirit. It gives me that extra push to perform at my absolute best,” said Hosendove.

Due to the low seeding, the Panthers are not expected to make a deep run in the conference tournament, but in a season where the best players on the team are only first and second-year collegiate athletes, there is no telling where this duo could lead the program. 

“Next season, I’m looking forward to getting with my teammates and having our chemistry improve,” Hosendove said. “I plan on training in the offseason and just getting back to working on the fundamentals and, of course, winning our conference next year.”

Next season will provide a better glimpse of what expect from the 

Hill is also an advocate of Hosendove’s development and believes this season will be a building block for his team and star player Taylor Hosendove. 

“I’ve been real proud of this team for how they have grown throughout the season,” Hill said. “The lessons and adversity that Taylor has had to overcome this season will greatly benefit her as she continues her career and after college as well.”

The Panthers will play in their season finale this Saturday against Georgia Southern in hopes of improving their conference tournament seeding.