With higher expectations comes more hard work for Hettinger-Scranton.
“Practice is a lot harder,” senior guard Abbie Kludt said. “They’re pushing us a lot harder.”
But the Night Hawks love it.
“We’re all getting jacked for games,” Kludt said.
And the results prove it. They’ve already won the Roughrider Tournament, which features a good chunk of Region 7 teams, and their top three players have all contributed early.
The senior Kludt runs the point. Teammate Sam Oase says she’s the heart of the squad.
“Abbie brings energy and intensity to our table,” Oase said. “She’s always the one to pump us up and get us going, for sure. She’s our playmaker.”
Oase is the six-foot tall sophomore that owns the paint.
“She’s a huge asset, being six feet tall,” Kludt said. “She can catch the ball, and she can even dribble it down the court if we need it.”
And if the ball isn’t going to Kludt or Oase, it’s probably with the junior Alyssa Andress.
“So athletic,” Kludt said of Andress. “She can drive left or right, spin off them, and shoot anything.”
“She’s great at driving and just making the right play every time. She’s smart with moving the ball and just looking to score.”
All three girls averaged double figures last season, and they’re confident they’ll get heavily involved on offense once again.
“We’re a very transitional kind of team,” Andress said. “We like to run the court a lot, and that means sharing the ball a lot.”
Their tempo makes it tough for opponents to catch up. So with this experienced trio back on the floor, the Night Hawks don’t just have their eye on another third place finish in Region 7: they want a title.
“It’s a great group. It’s the best group I’ve had all five years I’ve been playing,” Kludt said. “It’s all finally coming together as a senior.”
The Night Hawks play at Lemmon on Saturday night.