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Girls' basketball pushes on

As the girls’ basketball season continues to progress, the players look back on their performances to see where they have improved and the difficulties they have overcome.

“Our team is playing well, considering that this is a younger squad compared to last year’s squad,” Dan Avila, head coach, said. “Throughout the season, the younger players have learned how to handle the ball through the help of the older, more experienced players on the team.”

The team looks to the most determined player as a role model, leading the younger players in hard work and ruthless determination.

“Senior guard Tara Thompson leads the team by example,” Avila said. “Whenever she is on the court she is giving all of her effort to the game. She plays through pain and she leads the team by the effort she puts into her play.”

With the team looking up to her as an example, Thompson committs all her energy to every game. Encouraging the team to play harder and pleasing Avila are some of her daily goals.

“I have overcome being worried about what everybody else is doing,”” Thompson said. “I was more concerned about helping others to play better instead of worrying about the stuff that I needed to focus on.”

Despite being a role model to the team, Thompson’s determination helps her overcome physical pain that few have to endure.

“I have bad shins,” Thompson said. “There is not much that I can do about them except ice them and play through the pain.”

Although the squad may look to her as the team leader, Thompson looks back to the team for motivation and inspiration.

“When the team is in high spirits I feel more compelled to play hard and give more effort into my play,” Thompson said. “It is good to know that the team is in a good mood and want to be out there playing. It makes us play better.”

The more enthusiastic seasoned players help the younger players to become comfortable with their surroundings and playing with the older players.

“She has been a big part of me becoming more comfortable with the team,” Bonnie Hansen, center, said. “She makes everybody feel like they belong on the team and that each player is an important part of the team.”

The players appreciate the team spirit Thompson puts into her play and the equality she shows among the players.

“I appreciate how she treats us all equally,” Hansen said. “She makes everybody feel like they belong and has made me play harder and better knowing she shows such faith in her team mates even though they may be young.”

Even though the squad has improved, they do not take it to their heads and continue to progress and move into the areas that show room for improvement.

“We have improved in every area,” Avalia said. “They have become better with handling the ball and have become smarter in the way they set up their plays and moves.”

With few games left and a chance to play in the playoffs, the team works hard in order to finish the season off strong.

“We definitely have a chance for playoffs, but I have not decided if we are going to go or not,” Avalia said. “We are around fourth in the league and are only playing better as the end of the season approaches. I am looking forward to a strong finish from the girls.”

As the anticipation for the remainder of the season grows, the teams look on to their improvements.

“We have gotten over the nervousness of playing,” Thompson said. “We thought we were bad, but we overcame that and started playing like we were the best.”

Although they have overcome the shyness of playing against stronger squads, the team realizes they overcome their tasks as a team.

“Overcoming the small things and the big things as a team has helped to improve our skills together,” Hansen said. “It helps us to understand each other and the way that we play.”

The girl’s next game will be at Tranquility on Feb. 13, followed by a home game against Mendota on Feb. 17.
” “Greg Stobbe, adviser” “Kristy Howard, ’04, drives to the hoop against Caruthers on Feb. 3.” “Greg Stobbe, adviser” “Sara Wiens, ’04, looks to the paint for an offensive opportunity against Caruthers on Feb. 3.” “Insert text here

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