After having no seniors last year, the Goessel Bluebirds girls’ basketball team is expecting to improve on its 2014 record of 8-13.
“We have more experience, more leadership, and good players on this year’s team,” said senior Makayla King.
“We hope for more wins than last year with better shooting and better defense,” added senior Erin Brubaker.
Junior Page Hiebert returns as a starter after averaging 10.7 points per game last year. Hiebert can play post as well as guard and was named to the Wheat State League first team after last season.
Alicen Meysing, a 6-foot junior, is expected to start again this year. She averaged 6.8 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, and received honorable mention recognition from the WSL.
Aleena Cook will fill in at point guard as needed and scored 7.4 points per game last season. Senior Erin Brubaker started last year and plays post or guard for the Bluebirds. She grabbed 2.7 rebounds per game and scored 1.8 points per game. At 5-foot-3, Senior Chelsea Stika will contribute to the team’s success from the guard position.
“Last year the team shot 31 percent from the field, so we need to improve on that,” head coach Ryan Hoopes said.
Adding to the depth on this year’s team is a freshman class that won the Wheat State League last year as eighth graders. Several of those freshmen will battle for varsity spots, which will make practices competitive.
Twenty-six girls reported for practice this season, giving the Bluebirds the opportunity to field a Junior Varsity and “C” team, which should provide added experience for players working on individual skills.
Hoopes is assisted by Zana Manche and Tom Zogleman.
Hoopes predicts his team will finish in the top half of the league. He said Rural Vista may be hard to beat, but the Bluebirds should battle hard with Elyria Christian, Centre, and Little River.
Goessel will begin the season Dec. 5 with a home game against Inman. Goessel will follow with three home games in the Bluebird Classic on Dec. 9, 12, and 13.