Girls won’t settle for third this year
Tahoe-Truckee High School varsity girls’ basketball coach mike Merriman said he’d like his team to make it to the playoffs again, but third place just won’t do this time.
The Wolverines, who were knocked out in the first round of the state finals last year by Moapa Valley, return six seniors this year: Lindsey Back, Grace Kennelly, Shannon Holland, Kim Hoopingarner, Erin Thomasello and Corrie Cromm.
Juniors Suzanna Cox, Becca Shook, Katie Mickleson, Shauna Murray and Erin DeMont along with sophomore Emily DeCarlo round out the team.
“Our goal is again to get to state, but finish higher than third this time,” Merriman said.
Leading Truckee as standouts this year should be Kennelly at forward, Back and Hoopingarner at guard, all of whom are team captains.
Merriman said the girls will put man-to-man defense to use more this season than it did last year, emphasizing it more than zone defense.
“We’re hoping to do more pressing and try to run more on offense and use Lindsey and Becca,” he said.
Shook was a standout on the girls’ junior varsity team last year and the leading goal scorer in the state this fall for the state champ girls’ varsity soccer team.
In a recent scrimmage, Merriman got the chance to see how a short time at practice had been paying off.
“We did OK,” Merriman said. “Not very good in the first half. We didn’t handle the press very well, so we made a few adjustments.”
So far, the coach said he sees team speed as a strength.
“That’s a big plus this year,” Merriman said. “We don’t have the height we had last year, but Corrie Cromm is a decent jumper and she’s very aggressive.”
Merriman said the girls also need to improve ball-handling skills.
Truckee’s major opponents this year include Fernley and Spring Creek.
Truckee will face Whittell today at 4:30 p.m. at home.
Merriman said another key for success this year is to stay healthy and avoid injury.
Good advice for any team.
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For decades the snap of a baseball into a leather glove has signaled a return to warmer weather and the onset of spring in Truckee.