Getcha’ Head in the game

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Ginger Rodriguez (10) pick up a ball from the pile during basketball practice. They were practicing various drills in the small gym.

Despite losing last year’s graduates, the basketball team is confident for the upcoming season.
“I think they’re all really nice players, they have lots of skill and I think we’ll do really well this year,” returning player Jaqueline Galvan (11) said. “I think everyone’s stepped it up and I’m pretty sure it gonna be a good year.”
The team expressed feelings of loss because five of their most athletic players graduated in June. Consequently, this year’s freshman will need to pick up where the seniors left off.
“Five of them that were pretty good,” Coach Lora Tilson said. “They moved pretty quickly up and down the floor, things like that. So filling in those positions with younger players is going to be difficult.”
Karalynne Moreno (9) said she feels the pressure to get up to the level of the other players but she also feels a sense of community on the team.
“I think it’s going to be hard just because they’ve been playing with the team longer than we have, us freshman, but I also think it’s gonna be super good for us cause we’re going to be playing with older people, people that have more experience,” Moreno said. “What my mom always told me was ‘you become who you hang around’ and if I hang around and practice with people way better than me then I will get better.”
Players say they hope to improve their skills and their morale.
“Last year, every single time someone [on the other team] would score another point, we would just get down on ourselves and I think that having more confidence and more technique will really help us,” Galvan said.
This year’s team will play against more district teams than in previous years. Coach Tilson said she hopes these games will help boost the basketball team’s overall morale.
“We just need to put our heart and our mind to it and we need to work together,” Coach Tilson said. “I’m hoping that creates some momentum for us for basketball and shows that we can compete in district and then potentially next year be in district.”