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Girls' GMC Basketball Preview

November 27, 2012
Colerain High School/WeAreColerain.com



 

PRINCETON

Coach: Jill Phillips (11th season, 196-37 overall)

Last season: 21-4 (13-1)

What's new: The Vikings aim for their fourth-straight league title behind phenom Kelsey Mitchell and three other returning starters.

Key players: Junior G Kelsey Mitchell, senior G Emily Roper, junior F Chelsea Mitchell, junior G Jada Ballew, junior F Jasmyn Hardin, junior C Carlie Pogue

Outlook: Princeton has an extremely strong junior class led by Kelsey Mitchell (20.7 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 3.4 apg), the two-time GMC Player of the Year who is widely considered the top high school basketball player in the 2014 recruiting class. Roper and Ballew return to give the Vikings experience in the backcourt.


MASON

Coach: Rob Matula (eighth season at Mason, 15th overall)

Last season: 17-4 (10-4)

What's new: The Comets will rely on their tried-and-true upperclassmen, some of whom have three years experience.





Key players: Senior F Kayla McDowell, junior G Jenna Gunn, senior G Sarah Ammons, senior G Sydney Neal, senior G Alyssa Herren

Outlook: Mason posted the GMC’s best field-goal percentage last year, and the effective shooting should continue with four seniors in the starting lineup. McDowell (13.8 ppg, 7.4 rpg), a Missouri commit, led the league in shooting percentage. 


SYCAMORE

Coach: Paula Hayden (20th season, 286-135 overall)

Last season: 23-2 (13-1)

What's new: The defending GMC and district champions return only one starter.


Key players: Senior G Imani Outlaw, senior F Hannah Locke, senior G Kelly McDonald, senior F Adrian Burns, sophomore G Nancy Hunter

Outlook: The Aviators graduated four starters and two first-team all-GMC guards, including conference co-MVP Chloe Pavlech. Outlaw, who has committed to St. Bonaventure, returns to anchor a lineup that had the GMC’s best assist-to-turnover ratio last season.


LAKOTA WEST

Coach: Andy Fishman (16th season, 243-110 overall)

Last season: 14-9 (7-7)

What's new: The young Firebirds have plenty of weapons.

Key players: Senior G Emily Niehaus, sophomore G Lauren Cannatelli, junior F Amanda Gallof, junior C Elisabeth Carter

Outlook: West graduated seven seniors and now has just two on its roster. No Firebird averaged double digits last season, but five players averaged at least six points. Returning starters Cannatelli and Niehaus stepped up in last year’s sectional tournament.


LAKOTA EAST

Coach: Nikki Drew (fifth season at Lakota East, 110-54 overall)

Last season: 13-8 (9-5)


Key players: Sophomore PG Cydney Franklin, sophomore G Kandace Satterwhite, sophomore G Leah Goodwin, sophomore G Sharmaine Wills, senior F Kayla Lamar

Outlook: East graduated five of its top six scorers. Inexperience typically leads to turnovers and foul trouble, so Franklin will have to protect the basketball as she directs an offense that features four new starters.

COLERAIN

Coach: Dan Wallace (third season, 33-14 overall)

Last season: 16-7 (9-5)

What's new: Five new starters are ready to test their varsity mettle.

Key players: Senior PG Courtney Merritt, junior G Erin Sherrer, junior C Jalan Latimer, sophomore G Rachel Williams, sophomore G Kaylee Allen, freshman G Amaria Allen.

Outlook: Sherrer and Williams started a handful of games last year, but the Cardinals lost their top four scorers. Senior Courtney Merritt, who transferred from McAuley, will run the offense, with Williams chipping in as she returns from an ACL injury.


HAMILTON

Coach: Jill Meiring (first season)

Last season: 13-10 (5-9)

What's new: A new coach with just one returning starter.

Key players: Senior G Jillian Spurlock, junior F Emma Goins, freshman G Takyra Gilbert, freshman F Savannah Conrad

Outlook: Meiring previously coached five seasons at Marietta College. She once again has a big task with only one starter returning, but having Spurlock (16 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 3.3 apg) means the Big Blue has a leader around whom to build.


OAK HILLS

Coach: Steve Bittner (second season, 3-18 overall)

Last season: 3-18 (2-12)

What's new: Oak Hills returns its top four scorers.

Key players: Senior G Olivia Kilgore, senior G MacKenzie Lauman, senior F Lindsey Eckstein

Outlook: Oak Hills averaged only 30 points per game, which was 11 points lower than the next closest GMC team. No player averaged more than seven points last season.


MIDDLETOWN

Coach: Scott Dalton (sixth season, 34-92 overall)

Last season: 5-16 (1-13)

What's new: Five returning starters.



Key players: Senior G Vada Edwards, junior F Korie Roberts, junior G Emma Dalton, junior G Kayla Saylor, junior G/F Kylie Booker

Outlook: Edwards, who was first-team all-district last season, leads a junior-laden squad. The Middies have not had a winning season 1988.


FAIRFIELD

Coach: David Loper (second season, 4-17 overall)

Last season: 4-17 (1-13)

What's new: The Indians return three starters.


Key players: Junior G Bria Spaulding, senior G Jordyn Butler, senior G Kaitlyn Mueller, senior F Keyaisa Rhodes, senior G/F Adrianna Stewart, sophomore G Ashley Ricks.

Outlook: Stewart (7.6 rpg) returns as a leading rebounder. “The kids are eager to be successful and are willing to work hard to get there,” Loper said.


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