Girls basketball team works through adversity

With a smaller team heavy on freshmen, Yutan High School’s girls basketball team faces adversity as they head into the beginning of the new season. Yet the girls are focusing on the positives and looking forward to success.

Yutan girls’ basketball team huddles during the West Point-Beemer game. The team has three returning starters from last year. (Ellie Lloyd)

“We have such a small number, so that means scrimmaging and stuff like that we play against the same girls a lot. We use the same girls a lot,” junior Haley Kube said. “However, I say this year we have a lot of people who have played basketball before and are very skilled and have that basketball IQ and can come in and do whatever we need.”

  Assistant girl’s basketball coach Elliot Ruleaux agreed that having a smaller team can come with some advantages.     

“It’s easier to observe fewer people and help those fewer people get better over time,” Ruleaux said. 

However, the small team is composed mostly of freshmen, which brings its own challenges.

“It’s kind of a rebuilding year almost by having to learn all the plays once again and going through everything,” Kube said. 

Besides learning plays, the freshmen will also need to adjust to the new level of competition.

“They’ll make freshman mistakes, and they have a lot to learn still and get used to the speed of the game and how varsity plays,” senior Alyssa Husing said.

Freshman Mylee Tichota drives to the basket at West Point-Beemer. Tichota started her first game as a freshman. (Ellie Lloyd)

To help with the inexperience, upperclassmen are stepping up into leadership roles. 

“Just got to be a leader and show them what we do in practice, how we practice as a high school team, and how we care for each other,” junior Maura Tichota said.

As they rebuild, the team is working to discover what each player can contribute. 

“Everybody has their own skills that they bring to the team, whether that is shooting, rebounding,  or playing defense. We work hard at practice to make each other better,” Tichota said. 

Even with the adversity the team faces, they still have set goals for the season. 

“My goal my senior year in front of us, I definitely think we have the capability to make it to state. I think as long as we keep working hard and have a positive attitude throughout the season, we can definitely get there,” Husing said. “And with the dedication of the team, I think it’s a huge possibility.”