And it’s a little mantra that’s served the Californian-born Perth Lynx guard well in her debut WNBL season.
The 27-year-old was playing in Europe three years ago when she took up an opportunity at Western Australian state league team Rockingham Flames. For the next two years, after the winter season, she’d fulfil professional contracts in Slovakia and Germany then return to Perth and win championships, MVPs and scoring awards.
Last season Whitcomb wanted to test herself in the WNBL, but with both import spots filled, missed out on a place on the West Coast Waves’ roster. Months later the Perth Wildcats took the reins of the WNBL outfit and Whitcomb was the first import to sign on.
“I really think timing is a big part of this season I’ve had. If I had have been on other Waves teams things would probably be different now, I might not have had the chance to be part of the Lynx,’’ she said.
“I think all the right pieces have come together, not only for me but for the team too.”
Whitcomb has proved to be an out-and-out star for Perth, she’s averaged 19.4 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.7 steals this season and thrilled spectators with her tenacity, ferocious defence and dynamic shots. She sunk 21 points in the semi-final win over Townsville 10 days ago to lead Perth to its first grand final since 1999.
Sami Whitcomb step-back pic.twitter.com/oDJumt1q2P
— Perth Lynx (@PerthLynx) January 4, 2016
Whitcomb says it's been a dream first year for the Lynx.
“At the beginning nobody knew what to expect, we all came in with hopes and goals but didn't really know what was ahead of us,’’ she said.
“Right from the start we all got along really well and were eager to do well for the Perth club, they made us professional and we wanted it to be successful not only for the Lynx but so other WNBL clubs would follow Perth’s lead.
“It’s a fun group to be around, we like to work hard and we want to win and do something special.”
And after earning the right to host game one of the very first WNBL grand final series, Whitcomb and the Lynx are determined for success.
“We all wanted to make finals and get to the grand final. It’s pretty crazy to think now we are where we wanted to be,’’ she said.
“We appreciate what we’ve been able to accomplish but we’d be really disappointed to just settle for a grand final appearance, we really, really want to win now.”
Grand final series details:
Game 1: Saturday, 12 March from 7pm (AWST time), Bendat Basketball Centre, Perth. Ticketing informationhere.
Game 2: Friday, 18 March from 7pm (AEST time-not daylight savings), Townsville RSL, Townsville. Ticketing information call 07 4727 9797)
Game 3 if required: Sunday, 20 March Bendat Basketball Centre - details to follow.
Look out for updates on SBS Zela including live streaming information.