Lady Tigers ready to show they can play
By Jay Davis
Last season a very young and inexperienced team under a first-year coach struggled to a 2-19 record. This year the Lady Tigers and coach Ann LaMont are looking forward to proving that they are ready to take the next step and become a threat every night.
“The girls are excited,” said LaMont. “They are ready to see what they can do.”
The girls are still very young. The team has just one senior, three juniors, five sophomores and two freshmen on the varsity.
They are much more experience with five players who had appreciable time on the court last season.
“Last year was a transition year,” said LaMont. “This year the older kids know what to expect and they are willing to instill that in the younger kids. And by older, I mean juniors. They have a lot of pride.”
LaMont said she has four of the staring five picked out for Thursday’s opener at home against Cheyenne-Eagle Butte, with a group of four or five more fighting to get that last spot in the starting lineup.
Starting on Thursday will be juniors Aundrea Kramer and Chelsy Hoffman and sophomores Alexa Schaefbauer and Cassi Heumiller. Fighting for the fifth spot are junior Haley Filler, sophomores Kaitlin Good Shield and Taylor Brekke, senior Jo’L Pretends Eagle and freshman Samantha Good Shield. Rounding out the varsity are sophomore ReAnne Kohlus and freshman Naomi Stroeder.
LaMont said that no matter who wins the starting nod, all of the girls will be seeing plenty of court time as the plan is to use an eight to nine-player rotation.
While no one knows until the girls hit the floor just how much they have improved since last year, but the
dedication and willingness to get better has been evident.
“I’ve been surprised,” said LaMont. “They’ve surprised themselves at how much they’ve improved.”
The girls will have a huge advantage as they will play six of their first seven and 14 of their 20 games at home this season.
They will play four home games before the calendar turns to January. After the Cheyenne-Eagle Butte game, the girls host Britton-Hecla on Saturday as part of a doubleheader with the boys. The girls will play at around 5 p.m. They host Timber Lake on Dec. 19 and Herreid-Selby Area at the Mobridge Rotary Classic on Dec. 28.
The lone road game in December is at Aberdeen Roncalli on Dec. 17.
The Lady Tigers are 34-16 all time against Cheyenne-Eagle Butte. The Braves beat the Lady Tigers 63-25 in Eagle Butte before the Lady Tigers beat the Braves 42-40 at home for their first win last season.
The girls are 9-4 all time against Britton-Hecla, but Britton-Hecla dominated in Britton last year with a 77-33 win.