The Warriors should be a deep and experienced team going into the 2009-10 basketball season.
Third-year head coach Randy Savage has the opportunity to fill his starting lineup with seniors and still have two senior letter-winners off the bench.
The team was 12-9 last year on the strength of returning guards Lindsay Hett, Kayley Heerey, Danae Edwards, Bridget Lundy, and Kristen Steinborn, and forwards Julia Zeiner and Whitney Gordon.
Savage said that 20 players came out for this year’s team. He is hoping the four juniors — Emily Hett, Donna Cady, Jordan Harper, and Sarah Guetersloh — will solidify the team’s depth. Savage has also been impressed with the freshmen this year.
“A lot of kids expect things to be given to them, not earned,” he said. “These young ladies are just getting after it. The freshmen have impressed me with their willingness to learn and work.”
The Lady Warriors should feature a balanced offensive attack. Zeiner and sophomore Gordon should supply the Warriors with low-post scoring. Guards Edwards, Heerey, and Lundy should shoot confidently from the wings.
Orchestrating the offense is point guard Hett. Savage praised her decision-making and overall basketball intelligence.
“This group has height, speed ball handling, and shooters,” Savage said. “Our area that needs to improve is our ability to defend man-to-man every possession.”
The Warriors open the season with the Marion Classic Basketball Tournament Dec. 7 through Dec. 12, featuring teams from Berean Academy, Bluestem, Oxford, Remington, Peabody-Burns, Belle Plaine, and Eureka.
The Warriors play in a league this year with the preseason No. 1-ranked 3A team Wichita Collegiate. Hillsboro also looks to have a strong squad returning most of their starters from a team that went to the state tournament last year. Halstead also looks to be a tough opponent.
“About anybody in the MCAA, Moundridge, Berean, Remington,” Savage said of the opponents he is looking forward to playing. “Really, our schedule is tough.”