High Hopes for Varsity Girls Basketball

Gracey Doane, Staff

The varsity basketball team set the bar high last year, but are expecting to go even further this basketball season. With eight returning varsity players and an undetermined amount of newcomers, this team will be unstoppable.

These girls are starting out the season with returning head coach, Sarah Simmons; returning freshman coach, Diana Lane; and new assistant varsity and JV coach, Nicholas Hiebert.

“I think everyone is very aware of what ‘could be’ done with this group in the playoffs. I know that their goal is to get to San Antonio, and our job is to make sure we do all that we can to make that become a reality,” Coach Hiebert said.

The expectations have risen for the Lady Mustangs, but they will play with the new found skills from the preseason and leave the rest out on the court.

“Last season set the bar for Magnolia West Girls Basketball. I have seen many schools see a major development in program culture after the first big playoff run,” Hiebert said.

This year the team is going into this season ready to win.

“It’s a different mentality from the previous seasons because we went far in the playoffs last year,” Coach Simmons said, “We are running, shooting, and lifting more. We want it all and we know we have to earn it to get it.”

Losing three seniors last year requires the coaches to make some tough decisions. They have to figure out who should be moved up off of their talent, effort, and who will fit in well with the teams’ level of experience.

“We need to create a new chemistry for the new personality of our team.  We can’t get caught up in what we used to be, but rather who we need to become this year,” Simmons said.

With Coach Simmons hiring a new assistant coach,  Hiebert brings in his experience and knowledge of the game to help make the best choices.

“I am a big “details” person. I like to watch film and look at stats. I think I will provide Coach Simmons with another set of eyes to help make the decisions for the team in practice and in games,” Hiebert said.

This seasons motto is “It’s not given, it’s earned,” this is just as true on the players’ roles on the teams as well as the coaches.

“One of my contributions to the team is to develop them as athletes through strength and conditioning,” freshman coach Diana Lane said.

These players are all outstanding but a couple of girls are shaping up pretty well in the other player’s eyes.

“In my opinion, Hannah Eggleston and Kamryn Jones are both looking to be star players this year. Hannah’s always been an all-around amazing player on and off the court. Her game, both mentally and physically, is constantly improving and she never fails to impress me,” returning varsity senior Courtney Keith said. “Also, Kamryn Jones has begun to come into her own as a player as well as making huge moves towards being a potential star player. I’ll always be impressed, proud, and supportive of everything the two of them do.”

Returning varsity senior Hannah Eggleston that the training the team has done to add to the team’s success can only be an asset.

“Kendall May is going to be a force to be reckoned with on the court this year. She has been doing CrossFit and it is obvious, because she goes out there and dominates every rebound, every post move, and every defensive play,” Hannah Eggleston said. “In short she is a beast and I feel sorry for anyone who goes up against her.”

This season isn’t going to be handed to the Lady Mustangs but Coach Simmons has the talent to push the potential of her players beyond districts and regionals.

“We have all the pieces to have an incredibly successful season, we just have to put together all the pieces,” Simmons said.