Conference: 5A West
Coach: Alvin Riley, 12th year at school
Assistant coach: Kirk McDonald
Last year’s record: 22-8, second in conference, lost in quarterfinals of state tournament in overtime.
Returning starters: None.
Best inside players: Ashlin Hightower, 6-foot senior guard who was a part-time starter a year ago; Lacy Rios, 5-7 senior guard; and McKenzie Morris, 5-9 junior forward.
Best outside players: Audrey Moran, 5-5 junior point guard; McKenzie Gray, 5-8 senior guard; and Maci Loggins, 5-7 senior guard.
How will you match/exceed/fall short of your success from last year? “It is going to be hard to match last year because we lost five senior starters, but I do expect this team to be very competitive,” Riley said. “If we can get some wins early and get some confidence going, we have a chance to have a good year.”
Team strengths: “Our defense. We are not a pressure defense, but we do a pretty good job of containment and are good at holding a team to one shot,” Riley said.
Team weaknesses: “Obviously, inexperience, and speed and quickness. We are never real quick, but we are not as quick as we have been in the past,” the coach said.
Games to watch: The rivalry game with Greenbrier. The Cabot and Greenbrier tournaments will be strong. “We play Beebe, and they have a chance to be strong,” Riley said.
Toughest opponent: In conference, Harrison and Huntsville have a lot of kids back. Morrilton has a chance to be pretty good. “Shiloh Christian lost quite a bit, I think,” the coach said.
College prospects: Hightower. “She has good size outside and can shoot,” Riley said.
In a nutshell: “I think we are going to surprise some teams. We are not what we have been in the past, but we still have a chance to be good,” Riley said. “We are not going to be down like a lot of teams think. We will be competitive.”