“Hopefully we’ll get answers from Lei and Kelly soon, but if not we’ve got Maddy there ready to start and play a bigger role,” Goriss said.
“Her improvement was so rapid from her rookie season to last year. She put in a tremendous amount of work in the off-season when she went and played in the SEABL.
“Now she is going to play in the QBL [with Sunshine Coast], but you just saw the fruits and rewards of her working hard in the off-season. She came back in better shape, and with that rookie season under her belt, was ready to take the step up.
“She showed that in the early parts of the season, we were winning games and part of that was to do with Kelsey [Griffin], Kia [Nurse] and the rest of the group, but Maddy was a huge part of that.
“Her minutes were valuable, scoring, defending some key players on the opposition and making sure she could actually score and shoot the ball better than she did [previously].
“Her production probably dipped a little bit over the playoffs and that comes with experience. I can see she can be a starter within our group.”
Rocci is the sixth member of Canberra’s championship-winning squad set to line up for the Capitals next season with a host of key pieces falling into place.
Co-captains Kelsey Griffin and Marianna Tolo join Rocci, Kia Nurse, Keely Froling and Kristy Wallace on the roster with the front office waiting on a handful of others to decide on their next move.
Wilson is within reach of playing 400 games but could hang them up, Mitchell’s move will depend on her family and Lauren Scherf is considering the pursuit of a starting spot.
“I’ve been in constant contact with both of them, and I think Kelly is probably closer to making a decision sooner than Lei is,” Goriss said.
“Hopefully positive news by the end of this week on Kelly, Lei may take a little bit longer just because of family situations and what they want to do with [son] Kash and [partner] Mikaela.
“Lei is probably a few weeks off making a decision, and we’re in constant contact with her. Hopefully Kelly will be by the end of this week or next week.”
Caden Helmers is a sports reporter for The Canberra Times