JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Last winter, ETSU women’s basketball surged late, but struggled overall, only winning six games.

Now, under the direction of new head coach Brenda Mock Brown, the Bucs have sprinted out of the gate to an 8-2 record – the program’s best start since 1994.

The past week has seen the Bucs snag their first SEC victory since 2008, stifling Vanderbilt on Thursday night, 44-31. The team followed it up with a resounding win over NCCAA opponent Virginia University of Lynchburg on Sunday afternoon.

The Blue and Gold have been able to rely on consistent contributions from their top-line players, while also seeing growth from some of the young freshmen on the roster – and everybody is playing defense.

Mock Brown seems to be a major factor in unlocking the firepower of this squad, but she continues to deflect the credit back onto her assembled staff and coachable players.

“Jackie Alexander and Joe Silvestri were here on staff – they recurited a lot of these kids,” she said. “We’ve got nine new players – that was great for me. There weren’t 15 players on the team that were used to doing things one way and we had to get them out of it.”

“They were fresh, they were open, they were sponges – and they’ve bought in and started owning what we’re trying to do, so I think that’s the biggest difference,” Mock Brown continued. “We’ve got talent. We’ve got some pieces – if we can keep this going.”

ETSU (8-2) will not play any games this week, due to final examinations on campus. The Bucs will return to action on Sunday at 2 p.m. against Bowling Green inside Brooks Gymnasium.