Ant’s rants: Girls’ team to face difficult road for repeat


Anthony Cole, Sports Editor

    It is now basketball season ladies and gentleman. Following the girls’ historic state title run last season, the expectations this year are very high. The Mounties are returning senior and Western Michigan University commit Sydney Shafer, but how will the girls fill the void left by last year’s seniors.

    Most importantly, how will they replace Ella Bontrager. She played point guard for the team last season and was a catalyst both offensively and defensively. The senior leadership provided by Bontrager will be greatly missed.

     Another key player who will be hard to replace is Taryn Hendershot.  Hendershot was often the shortest player on the court, but she made up for height with toughness and grit. She was the player who we would find on the ground scrapping for loose balls and fighting for every rebound. Still the question remains, who is going to fill those positions?

    With those losses, and adding Carson Sleight to the mix, the team will struggle to replace them all. However, look for players like juniors Jozie Bontrager, Morgan Hanchett, and Brooklynne Bevier to step up. It will be interesting to see who starts for the Mounties this season. Bontrager and Hanchett provide perimeter threats for the team, and Bevier is an interior force to be reckoned with.

     Coach Ryan Carroll will have the opportunity to experiment with his new lineups. As for underclassmen, I’m not sure who will make the team at this point in time.

    As a ceiling prediction, the girls will finish 17-3 on the year and win another district title. I feel as though a tough regional opponent will be too much for the younger team. As a floor prediction, the team will go 14-6, still a great record nonetheless. Outside of Coldwater and Harper Creek this season they won’t have much competition within the conference.

   Overall, they will present another tough team as always, but with the spotlight on them early, it will be difficult to live up to last season.