Talented guards to lead women
By JUSTIN JENVEY
WITH last year’s core returning and rival teams losing key personnel, Myrtleford has its eyes set on playing finals in the women’s competition in 2018/19.
After narrowly missing out on a post-season berth in their inaugural season, coach Les Stevens believes his side is capable of a high finish in year two.
“It’s a really good squad, we’re not as tall as we were last year but we have the core group back, everyone understands one another and are really happy together so I think we can go places,” he said.
The Saints women have lost a veteran presence inside in Rebecca Piazza who was one of the team’s most important players last season despite missing multiple games through injury.
They’ve also had to replace reserve forwards, but Stevens is confident the combination of Amie Antonello and incoming power forward Celestine Ellen can do the major of dirty work in the paint.
“Celestine hasn’t played much basketball before but has come a long way in training and with Amie we expect those two to do a power of work around the basket,” Stevens said.
“In the other forward spots, we have a bit of athleticism with Jasmine Cerminara and should get a lot more out of Tianna Hughes too.
With a bevy of capable guards, Myrtleford’s strength will again be at the one and two positions with Paige Zamperoni leading a group that includes her sister Abbey, Racquel Stevens and three-point sharp shooter Grace McKerral.
Stevens also expects the team’s three development players Molly Brock, Emily Cossor and Zahra Pitts to see significant game time during their first seasons.
“We do have a handful of guards that can handle the ball and shoot so we have lots of options there, but we’re also trying to get everyone to shoot the ball,” Stevens said.
“We’ve been working on toughening the girls up and being a bit more active and aggressive in defence so hopefully we can bring that intensity and be able to adapt to each game situation.”
READY TO FIRE: Jasmine Cerminara, Raquel Stevens and Tianna Hughes will all play important roles for Myrtleford.