Winter is here! That means basketball season is upon us for the next 5 months. This year’s girls basketball team brings back experienced players, but also some fresh underclassmen. Injuries, a tough conference schedule, and new coaching staff are seen as opportunities to adjust and get better.
Despite senior Morgan Fopma and sophomore Bailey Roose being out with ACL injuries, a spark of energy is being found in new head coach Brad Engbers. “Coach Engbers has coached in the past and it has shown,” commented senior Emma Huisman. “He brings so much energy and intensity which then transfers to the players. I think it’s going to be a very great year.”
A fast paced, yet controlled, type of play is what the team and coaches are looking for. One of the team’s strengths is speed and guard/post balance. “I would say that our team has a lot of athleticism and a wide variety of skills this year, which is awesome! A lot of girls are playing multiple positions and doing well at that,” said senior Isabella Baugh.
With 15 girls total between JV and Varsity, lack of numbers can be looked at as a challenge, but senior captains remain optimistic. “We can look at the lower numbers and see that as a challenge, or we can look at the 15 dedicated girls that went out and see their passion and ongoing growth of the game. We have experienced seniors and other players who are learning and adjusting well from JV to Varsity. Everyday, we have fun, work hard, and bond,” said senior Mary Kate Bandstra.
The Eagles have started their season 0-3 with losses to Van Meter, Montezuma, and ADM. “Watching the girls work hard to get better is something I enjoy. They need to show some true grit. I think we will see more results as the season progresses,” said head coach Brad Engbers. Next up, both basketball teams play Pella this Friday night in a classic cross town game. The girl’s varsity starts at 6:15 and the varsity boys’ game will follow at 7:30.