BY SHAIN GILLET
Clipper Sports Editor
WOODS CROSS – The Woods Cross Wildcats girls’ basketball team struggled last season, finishing with just six overall wins and three in Region 6 play.
After an early playoff exit ended their season, second year head coach Tarah Vernon has high hopes for a team that will see only a few seniors return to the floor this season.
“The one thing people can say about us last year is that we never quit,” she said. “They showed a lot of resiliency, and we had some rough times, but they didn’t quit on themselves.”
The team will return only a pair of seniors, who will quickly be looked upon to provide leadership on the floor. Aubree Riddle and Gaby Ocejo were the two names that stood out to Vernon.
As juniors, Riddle led the team in scoring, averaging 11.4 points per game. Ocejo played in most of the games for Woods Cross, coming off the bench.
“They’ve been here all three years, and have been through the ups and downs,” said Vernon. “We’re looking to both of them to provide some leadership and lead by example.”
Along with those seniors, however, are roughly seven juniors that will fill out the roster. Six of them, said Vernon, saw significant varsity time last year, proving that the team will have some varsity depth once they get on the court.
“The whole team has made some improvements over the summer months,” said Vernon. “We’ve got them on a weight-lifting schedule, and we’re trying to create a good development program for all of them.”
Another target that will return this season is Halle Smith, a junior. Last season Smith averaged 5.5 points per game, and is motivated to be more involved with the team.
Marissa Brunner, another returnee, was dubbed “Ms. Consistency” by Vernon, who also said she “does all the tough things that don’t show up on the stat sheet.”
All in all, Vernon is hopeful her second season as the Lady Wildcats coach will be a successful one.
“We have a great group of girls who love to play together,” she said. “I can’t wait to get the season started.”
Wildcats 2013-2014 schedule
11-26 @ Layton
12-5 BOX ELDER
12-17 @ Olympus
12-19 @ Roy
1-7 @ Highland
1-10 @ Judge Memorial
1-17 @ Cyprus
1-22 @ Bountiful
1-28 @ East
2-4 JUDGE MEMORIAL
2-7 @ Clearfield
2-18 @ Kearns
2-24 to 3-1 State 4A Tournament at SLCC