Lady 'Cats look for growth in new season

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
A huge factor for Lady Wildcats success this season will depend on the ability of Raeghan Blisard to lead the squad. Chuck Nickle Special to the Cassville Democrat

Team needs seniors to lead for season success

Last year's 6-19 season, which ended with a 5-point loss to Aurora in districts, is one the Lady Wildcats basketball team, Head Coach Chris Shore and he Wildcats' staff want to forget about.

But, one thing they want to remember is that Shore has four players who were starters or part-time starters returning.

"We are going to have some talented freshmen mix in with a group of kids that got some valuable varsity playing time last season," Shore said.

Shore will have to replace a three-year starter, Katelyn Pitts, who was a scrappy guard and played the game very hard. He will also have to replace Brittani Long, who decided not to play this season.

A great place to start in regard to the upcoming Lady Wildcats would be senior Raeghan Blisard, who was a 2nd Team All Big 8 player last year. She is a four-year starter. She does a good job of running the point, as well as being the team's leading scorer and rebounder. One thing that has Shore curious is how well she will bounce back from ACL surgery.

Even if Blisard is not at exactly 100 percent, her athleticism makes her one of the best players when she is on the court. Shore is looking for her to be his squad's leader.

"We are excited to get started and see how our veteran players mix with our good young players," said Blisard.

Another senior on the Lady Wildcats team is Brooke Fields. Shore describes her as a hard-nosed post that has developed into more of a scoring threat.

Junior Makenzie Durossette plays the role of good defender for Shore. He also likes her ability to knock down jump shots from 12 foot and in. Another junior, Lindsey Halterman, has been working hard to improve her outside shot.

Shore is also going to lean heavily on some sophomores to help improve on last year's record. Devyn Callahan is an athletic guard with a lot of potential. Macey Parsons is a 5-8 player who had a good summer. She has improved as a finisher around the basket.

Candace Wallace is described by Shore as a pure shooter, and rounding out the sophomore class is a move-in from Blue Eye, Kaileygh Gorski. She should bring some rebounding depth to Shore's squad.

That talented freshman class that Shore spoke of earlier is led by Madi Stokes. She is 6-2 and will be looked upon to have an immediate impact in the middle with her size. Hallie Long is a 5-7 scorer who is a very aggressive, hard-nosed player.

With all this combined, it is no wonder why Shore is eagerly anticipating the upcoming season.

"I really feel like this group will be much more competitive this season," he said.

The Lady Wildcats open their season Dec. 1 in the Blue Eye Tournament, and their home opener is Dec. 8 against Pierce City.

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