Coach: Frank Layden

1998 record: 8-22 l Tied for 4th in West l Did not make playoffs

Frank Layden, the former coach of the Utah Jazz, took over the Starzz last July and has set about making the team more well-rounded. During the preseason, he planned trips to the zoo, movies, amusement parks and baseball games. He also created a book club and planned a parents' weekend. It is yet to be seen whether these off-court activities will translate into better on-court chemistry. The Starzz significantly improved through the draft. With their first pick, they chose 1998 ABL most valuable player and Utah native Natalie Williams, who led the league in scoring and rebounding last season. Utah also addressed a pressing need for a point guard by taking Debbie Black in the second round. Black was the ABL defensive player of the year in 1997 and a two-time ABL all-star with the Colorado Xplosion. Elena Baranova won the Gazetta dello Sport award in 1998, given to the top female European player. Former University of Virginia standout Wendy Palmer, who led the team in scoring last season at 13.5 points per game, ranked fifth in the league in double-doubles.

Web site: www.wnba.com/starzz/

Top Players

Tammi Reiss

5-6, 129 lbs.

Tricia Bader

5-4, 125 lbs.

Elena Baranova

6-5, 182 lbs.

Natalie Williams

6-2, 200 lbs.

Wendy Palmer

6-2, 165 lbs.

Last Year's Starting Lineup

G

Tammi Reiss

G

Chantel Tremitiere

C

Margo Dydek

F

Elena Baranova

F

Wendy Palmer

Schedule

June

12 Orlando 9

14 at Minnesota 8

17 at Houston 8:30

19 Sacramento 9

24 at Sacramento 4

26 Minnesota 9

28 at Los Angeles 10:30

30 Houston 10

July

2 Cleveland 9

6 Detroit 9

8 at Washington 7

10 at Orlando 7:30

12 Phoenix 2

16 Houston 9

18 at New York 4

19 at Charlotte 7:30

21 at Detroit 12

24 at Cleveland 7

26 Washington 9

27 at Phoenix 10

30 at Los Angeles 9

31 Sacramento 9

August

3 New York 9

5 Los Angeles 9

7 Minnesota 9

9 Charlotte 9

11 at Minnesota 8

13 Phoenix 9

14 at Sacramento 10

16 at Houston 8

20 at Phoenix 10

21 Los Angeles 9

CAPTION: Top player: Natalie Williams