Young Scottie Squads To Begin Season In Glendive
By J. Levi Burnfin
Published: Wednesday, November 28th, 2012
But this season, the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams have three returning starters combined. Senior Bryan Larson is the lone boy to return from a starting spot last season and seniors Alex Page and Alaina Cole return for the girls.
Larson also happens to be the lone senior on the boys’ team with Laurel Wageman joining Cole and Page as the three seniors on the girls’ team. Needless to say, the first games of the two teams’ seasons will be a learning experience.
“We just have to see where we’re at. We’ve got a pretty good idea we have a long way to go but the kids have to see it, too,” said Norm Braaten, the boys’ head coach. “We need a game.”
The girls' head coach Chuch Barstad agreed that a game will be beneficial at this point. For both teams, that will come against Class A Glendive on Saturday, in Glendive.
“We will start to see some of these juniors and possibly underclassmen . . . who is going to step up and start fighting for these spots?,” said Barstad.
The spots he meant were not only spots on the team but spots in the starting lineup. The three seniors – Wageman, Cole and Page – are sure-fire starters at this point, with juniors Lexis Synan and Erika Hartsock penciled in the other two starting spots.
“Things can change during the week of practice,” said Barstad.
But that is still more stable than the boys’ team at this point.
After being asked who will start against Glendive on Saturday, Braaten answered, “I can tell you Bryan Larson is.”
The other four spots for the Scottie boys are up for grabs. With a couple of players sidelined with injuries, the race really is wide open. Braaten mentioned nearly the entire roster when addressing who might start for him. It’s a race that probably won’t be settled until a couple of weeks into the season.
Even the red/white scrimmage that was held at Glasgow on Saturday for both teams wasn’t much help as far as assessing individual kids.
“Chaotic” is how Braaten desribed it. But it did help in assessing strengths and weaknesses for the team.
“I was just disappointed defensively,” said Braaten. “We can be smaller than somebody else or slower than somebody else but there’s no excuse for not playing the basic quality man defense and weak-side help.”
But he also noted a couple of bright spots and areas they can build on. So did Barstad. And it’s those areas that they will be looking to see shine on Saturday against Glendive.
“I want to see where [the girls are] at defensively,” said Barstad. Glendive is “usually very well coached down there. We’re going to have to play well.”
So will the boys’ team, which faces a tall challenge in Glendive’s 6’7” center.
Look for a full preview of the Scottie basketball teams in next week’s Winter Sports Preview.
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