Although they don’t play together year round in school, the lady Lancer basketball team found another way to practice during the fall season: they played in the KC Premiere fall league. The team didn’t break any records, but the purpose of the fall season was not only to win of games.
“Fall league is about competition and playing once a week with your teammates,” girls’ basketball head coach Austin Klumpe said. “Most importantly, it gives the girls a chance to get a little bit in shape and get the ball rolling.”
While the girls are not allowed to be coached in the offseason, those not participating in fall sports trained with the coaches after school every day, running and lifting weights. Because of this KSHSAA rule, they could not have a coach at the games during the fall season.
“I want our girls talking to each other, to develop leadership skills and teamwork skills,” Klumpe said. “To learn from each other, to learn from game situations, to learn how to sub each other out and to call out a few plays that they know.”
The lack of coaching for SM East may have affected the scores of the games, because several other non-high school teams did have coaches. But, it certainly helped the girls learn how to think on their feet.
“We don’t really have an offense,” sophomore Josie Clough said. “It’s harder for us to score and then our defense isn’t as good. But we actually played pretty well, since we just kind of do whatever with the situation we have, so on the fly we make a play and we just do it.”
They ended their fall league basketball season on Oct. 19, after playing an eight game season.
East was able to face their rival, SM Northwest. They didn’t win, but the team was able to see what their strengths and weaknesses were and what they needed to work on.
“We definitely realize how much more we need to work out and get shooting,” Clough said. “Their program is far ahead of ours, but we’re getting there.”