Sr. hoopsters thump Broncos in opener

Jamie Mountain

You couldn’t ask for a better start to the season.
The defending NorWOSSA champion Muskie senior girls’ basketball team made an emphatic early statement as they cruised to a 52-17 rout of the Broncos in the season-opener last Tuesday in Kenora.
Muskie coach Gord McCabe said that the team’s depth was a major key to the convincing victory.
“I was really pleased with our ball movement and we are starting to play within the offence,” he told the Times last Thursday.
“Kenora came out fired up and, for the first four minutes or so, they hung in but as we continued to score, they just could not keep pace with us.
“Our depth is definitely our key,” he noted.
Jamie Spencer scored a team-high 11 points to pace the Muskies’ offence, who led the Broncos by a commanding 38-10 margin at halftime.
Keisha DeBungie chipped in with seven points, while Grace Petsnick, Rachel Anderson, Simone Payne, and Alina Eldridge each netted six.
Janissa Judson notched four points while Aurora Hutton, Joanna Empey, and Bella Ward each scored a basket.
“We are starting to get a bit of a platoon system going, which gives everyone enough playing time to feel involved,” said McCabe.
“We have no real weak links and although the bench may get shorter at times, we can always have fresh legs out there.”
The black-and-gold (1-0) were slated to resume NorWOSSA action yesterday afternoon when they welcomed the Sioux Lookout Warriors (0-1) to the “Fish Tank” for their home-opener (score unavailable at press time).
Fort High then will wrap the week up by heading to Dryden to battle Eagles (1-0) for the first of three meetings this season.
“We will continue to work on sharpening our offence and may do some experimenting with a zone defence, although I think we will always rely largely on player-to-player,” McCabe said of his squad’s preparation for this week’s games.
“These girls have a pretty high basketball IQ, so we can try some stuff we haven’t tried before.”
McCabe also said that it’s always nice to play a new opponent, such as the Warriors, who were promoted to the ‘AA’ division this year.
But he’s also not sure if Sioux Lookout’s promotion to the division is actually a good thing or not.
“In my opinion Dryden, Beaver Brae [Kenora] and us should have all dropped to ‘A’ this year and I proposed that last year but, as a community coach, that is not my call and is a whole other topic,” he remarked.
“Dryden beat Sioux by 35 [points] in their first game, so I am expecting we will be just fine. I am looking forward to the game in Dryden next Thursday to see how we match up with them.”
McCabe feels as though if the Muskies play their game and stay out of foul trouble that they will fare well in both games this week against the Warriors and Eagles.
“The one thing that I did not like about our game against Beaver Brae was that we got beat down the floor a few times early and we want to make sure we don’t let that happen,” he stressed.
“Part of that was my fault as I was asking our guards to both pressure and be safeties and they can’t do both,” he conceded.
“We made the adjustment and that helped a lot.”