As basketball season gets under way, the girls of southern Denton County will once again lace up for what promises to be another great year on the hardwood.
Argyle, Liberty Christian, Denton Guyer and Marcus all made the post season, and all are looking to pick up right where they left off last year.
Marcus advanced to the area round of the playoffs last year, and coach Fred Jones said his team has a lot of returning firepower from last season.
“We are excited about this season,” Jones said. “We have eight returners from last year, with seven receiving district accolades, including the Defensive Player of the Year. We will have more depth than last year. We have six seniors who are great leaders.
“Also, it will be our second year with the same system, including our first full spring last year.”
Jones said what makes him most exciting is the quality of talent he has returning.
“We have several players that will lead us,” Jones said. “Vanessa Jones, Newcomer of the Year as a freshmen and Defensive Player of the Year last year, will be one of our top leaders. She has been a first team district performer since entering high school. Ashley James will be our floor leader.
“Sierra Bone is our emotional leader. We have six players who have played and/or started since freshmen year, and they are Vanessa, Ashley, Sierra, Morgan Easley, Taylor Roof, and Alex Lapeyrolerie. Lapeyrolerie is a move-in from Houston. She has already committed to University of New Mexico. Sierra Bone has committed to University of Central Arkansas.”
Marcus finished 23-13 last season and went 11-3 in district competition.
Jones said he anticipates Lewisville and Flower Mound to be the teams to beat in district this year, and said to have a successful season, it will take a couple of things.
“There are three things we must achieve to have a successful season: love, play and work,” Jones said.
“Love each other, play great defense, and work harder than our opponents. The rest will take care of itself if we achieve these three things.”
Across town at Flower Mound, the Lady Jags finished last season with an 18-14 overall record, but went 6-8 in district and missed the playoffs.
Coach Sherika Nelson said the team has a good combination of experience and youth this season and said it should make for an interesting year.
“Practices are going well so far,” Nelson said. “The kids are excited about the upcoming year and are working hard to achieve their goals. We will have a good mixture of young and experienced players. This will be an exciting team to watch.”
Like coach Jones over at Marcus, Nelson said she, too, has a number of strong players returning from last year.
“Ashley Deary is returning after averaging 18 points, four assists, five steals and four rebounds a game last year,” Nelson said. “She brings so much to this team offensively with her ability to create shots for her teammates and finish on her own. Defensively, she is able to change the tempo of the game in seconds. Kayla Mount, a sophomore, is a returning varsity member and will be a key contributor from the outside.
“Junior, Jessie Larson, will play a key role as well. Jessie is a versatile player that can help us at many spots. Incoming Freshman, Lauren Cox, will have a huge impact offensively and defensively. Her ability to finish inside the paint, rebound on both ends of the floor, and ability to see the floor will help make our team successful. Devon Weidner, a senior and returning varsity member, will also play a key role inside the paint and with her leadership of this team.”
Nelson said her players are “hungry to get back to the playoffs,” and said the goals for this season are to do the little things that make a difference, get better every game and play hard to the end of each game.
“We will have to play big defensively and let our defense create our offense,” Nelson said. “We have to stay focused on rebounding and ‘smart’ basketball. We also have to stay together as a team and continue to get better every day.”
Denton Guyer wrapped up last season with a 9-4 mark in district competition and advanced to the first round of the playoffs.
The Lady Wildcats are moving down a division this season, which should make things easier to earn a post-season berth.
“The girls worked hard throughout the summer and pre-season,” Assistant Coach Kristin Treppa said. “They have put in some quality time in the gym and competed in a couple of showcase tournaments in the fall. We are improving every day and look forward to our play in district 5-4A.”
Guyer was 26-9 on the season last year, and Treppa said, with three returning starters, the coaching staff is excited about this campaign.
“Katy Davis is one of our three returning seniors and is a leader for us on and off the court,” Treppa said. “Bre Clay Baker is another returning senior. She is coming off a knee injury and we are looking for her to make a big impact in our new 4A district. We are expecting Quamese Moss, a 2 year varsity letterman, to step it up for us during her Junior year in our new realignment.”
Treppa said the major goal for this season is to earn a post-season berth, and said to accomplish that, it will take a couple of things.
“We are going to need some leadership on the floor this year,” Treppa said. “Girls who aren’t afraid to make mistakes, who compete and don’t let up, and who can play hard all four quarters from start to finish. What we do best is defense and if that can create us some offense we should be okay. Achieving this we should be able to have a good season and hopefully clinch a 2013 playoff spot.”
The Argyle girls finished last season with a 17-14 overall record and advanced to the area round of the playoffs.
Coach Skip Townsend said he does not expect an easy road in this year’s district, but said he does have team that can make some noise, and hopefully, make a good post-season run.
“Our district is very tough,” Townsend said. “Frisco Lone Star and Carrollton Ranchview all return veteran players from last year’s playoff teams. State runner-up Celina graduated heavily, and will rely on two returning starters and three strong ‘move-ins’ to aid their defense of the district title. Both Aubrey and Argyle return veteran players and will test the three top teams for playoff position.”
The Lady Eagles return last year’s Newcomer of the Year, Delaney Spain, at post along with District Defensive MVP Kim Strelke, and two First Team All-District selections in Allea Harris and Jesse Sheridan.
Laurie Beth Chalk, a second team All District Selection, along with Morgan McInaney and Madison Hardy also return.
Townsend said it will take three things for his team to earn a playoff spot this season.
“We will need team unity, a strong work ethic on a daily basis, and a continuation in working hard toward our team defense,” Townsend said.
The Liberty Christian girls basketball team also earned a post-season berth last season, after finishing 8-4 in district competition.
The Lady Warriors, who have won multiple state championships in the last decade, should once again vie for a district championship and make the playoffs.