Varsity Girls Basketball has Strongest Start in 13 Years


11-2 overall and 4-1 in district play, the varsity team has their eyes set on conference championships

This year’s varsity girls basketball team is well into their season and has started off strong on an 11-2 run, and they aren’t backing down. This is the program’s best start since head coach Lynn Ewald took over the program 13 years ago.

“Ewald brings a lot of things to the table. He brings experience because he’s been coach at PFHS for many years and has had a lot of success,” said sophomore Hope Palmer.

Ewald coaches alongside assistant coach Adam Jensen. “Jensen brings a different perspective. If you ever need an explanation of something he can re-word it so you understand it completely,” said Palmer.

According to Ewald, something the whole team is working on is taking advantage of their length and athleticism, such as points in the paint, steals and offensive rebounds.

Their focus seems to be paying off as they are 4-1 in district play after beating Briar Woods 47-46 on Jan. 8. This game was particularly important to the team as they were facing former assistant coach Raven Short, who took a head coaching position at Briar Woods last year.

“We just really wanted to beat them to prove that we could,” said sophomore Paige Anderson. “[Short] is really good at calling plays. We knew she would draw up a fancy play in the end of the game, so we tried to limit their open players.”

Last year, Anderson broke record for most blocks in a game, and this year, a goal she has for herself is to beat the season record for blocks. Anderson averages five blocks a game.

“I’m just trying to be in the right spot at the right time,” said Anderson.

Before beating Briar Woods, the team had back-to-back wins on Jan. 3 and 4 against Park View 49-21 and Stone Bridge 42-24. “We are a really deep team and as we play at a high level, it begins to wear other teams down as the game progresses,” said Ewald.

The varsity squad hasn’t lost a game since before winter break, when they fell to Freedom 54-36 on Dec. 19. “We turned the ball over a lot, we gave into their pressure, and they run a really good press. We threw the ball right to them,” said Anderson. “We left their shooter open.”

To refocus after the loss, the team took a break from practice and enjoyed time away. “When we came back, I felt like we were really focused,” said Anderson.

The team travels to take on Tuscarora, 10-2, on Tuesday, Jan. 15. The Huskies have a forward who averages 28 points a game in sophomore Isabellah Middleton, but the varsity team feels up for the challenge.

“We have girls that are sacrificing for the common good and when that happens you’ll see success,” said Ewald.