Lady Wildcats Eager To Begin Season
The Paden City Lady Wildcat varsity basketball team will be under the direction of new Head Coach Rick Bertozzi and assistant Ed Amos this season.
The two coaches have plans to make believers out of their group of 21 players and they hope to see success by the end of February.
“If we can get them to believe they can win,” said Bertozzi, “we’ve met half our goal for the season. “They have to believe that any team is beatable, any game is winnable. Every one of our girls is ready for this season to begin. They’ve been working very hard and seem to be excited to start playing.”
The Wildcats lost three productive players to graduation last year, Shauna Durant, Sasha Newson, and Amy Toman.
The Lady Wildcats return four players with experience from last year’s team, Amanda Tallman, Courtney Conaway, Ali Bertozzi, and Erica Sapp, all seniors.
The Wildcats’ strength throughout the season will fall on the shoulders of these four returning seniors, along with newcomer to the varsity line-up, freshman Megan Cutlip.
The coach is looking to work Cutllip as a true point guard. “She’s going to go through some growing pains, but she’s a hard worker and she wants to do well. She’ll be alright,” added Bertozzi.
Juniors Meagan Barker, Adrianna Gilbert, Joni Myers, and Kayla Thomas will all be vying for positions with the varsity team, as well as sophomores Dominique Craft, Amanda Heasley, and Sabrina Midcap, and freshmen Logan Cosper, Samantha Shreves, and Tiffany Palmer.
“I want them to always play like we’re two points behind, and quit paying so much attention to the scoreboard throughout the game,” Bertozzi said. “Once we get ourselves talked into believing that we can win, we deserve to win, our attitudes will change and good things will happen for us.”
The Lady Wildcats had four wins last season, a number which Bertozzi believes they can surpass easily this season.
“Like I said, they are a hard working bunch of girls, I think they are ready to step up and get things done,” added Bertozzi.
The Lady Wildcats began their season Tuesady at Clay Battelle and will host their own tournament at Bob Burton gymnasium on Dec. 11 and 12.