Players said they spent the summer serving in the D.C. community and getting together for team dinners at restaurants or the coach's home.
Christian said the team could create an advantage for itself in a conference that does not attempt many three-pointers.
Five freshmen and a trio of transfers make up the eight new additions to the largest Colonials’ roster in more than 15 years.
Christian developed and refined his coaching skills, later taking on more formal roles at teams like his alma mater Mount St. Mary’s and Siena.
The team is shifting from its previous defensive technique to a fast-paced, aggressive "mayhem" style.
With six of its 17 members hailing from Maryland, D.C. and Virginia, the team has the second highest number of regional recruits in a decade.
He transformed Siena from a second-to-last-place finish in its conference to a regular season runner-up and a nine-win improvement from the year before.
Rizzotti said she expects the freshmen to see time on the court early in the season as she plays around with different lineups.
More than half of the team did not play last season, with some returning players bouncing back from injury and others arriving at GW for the first time.
After guard Mei-lyn Bautista and forward Kelsi Mahoney graduated, the Colonials
must rely on younger leadership for the 2019-20 season.
Sophomore Maddie Loder filled the role as 2019-graduate Bautista’s understudy, but point guard options were overall scant for the Colonials last season.
Players said the team spent its lead-up to the season bonding over movies and D.C. outings and sharpening its individual and team skills.
Junior forward Neila Luma was one of the team’s offensive centerpieces last season, scoring a team-high 10.4 points per game and pulling 6.1 rebounds.
The Colonials mustered just 51.3 points per game last season, its lowest team average in more than 38 years.