Alan Stahlecker, head coach of the Centre High School girls basketball team, is concerned about the lack of experience in his varsity team.
“We are very, very young and inexperienced at the varsity level this season,” he said.
The team lost four seniors to graduation last spring, including two girls who were among the leading scorers for the past three seasons.
“We will need to have some young players take a large step upward to make us competitive,” Stahlecker said. “We will need to find some consistent scorers for us to be competitive every night.”
Allison Shields is the only returning starter. The 5-8 senior is among the best rebounders and post defenders in the area. Stahlecker expects her to improve her scoring this year.
Other returning letter-winners are junior Theo Kassebaum and sophomore Ellie Miller. Kassebaum is a strong defender and Miller is a solid rebounder. Stahlecker expects their overall game to improve, making them more effective this year.
Other members of the team are seniors Katie Remy and Ashley Jensen; juniors Cassandra Dones and Brianna Alvarez; sophomores Anna Weber, Genesis Rudolph, Carrie Carlson, Beka Basore, and Skylar Sullivan; and freshmen Makenzie Deines, Bryanna Svoboda, Amy Makovec, Cacey Simons, and Yvonne Calvert.
“We have several young players who are working hard for playing time,” Stahlecker said. “They are competitive and bring a variety of talents to our team.”
Despite his team’s inexperience, he expects them to be competitive in the new Wheat State League. Little River and Goessel are favored to top the league but Centre is expected to be in the mix along with several of the former Eisenhower league teams.
Stahlecker is in his second year as head girls basketball coach. He served as an assistant for five years. He is assisted by Richard Idleman.