Boardman girls’ lost their top 3 scorers; return promising group

The Spartans begin play at Mooney.

Boardman Spartans High School Basketball

2017-18 Boardman Girls’ Basketball Preview
Head Coach: Jeff Hammerton
Record: 14-10

More:High School Basketball previews from other teams

The Good News
The Spartans welcome back a quartet of letter winners in senior Annaliisa Cordova, as well as, juniors Alicia Saxton, Cate Green, and Ashley Saxton. Cordova snagged 3.5 rebounds per game before her season was cut short due to a broken hand. Coach Jeff Hammerton says, “Annaliisa does a lot of the dirty work that doesn’t go in the stat book, but makes us better.” Alicia Saxton scored 5.4 points and 3.8 boards as a sophomore. Green dished out 1.7 assists and tallied a scoring average of 5.2. Coach Hammerton views his returnees as a real strength, “Alicia and Cate started for us last season and along with Cordova and Ashley Saxton have worked really hard in the offseason to improve their games and should be ready to provide scoring and leadership.” Boardman also will have three freshman who will see significant time on the court this winter in point guard Reagan Burkey, wing Maria Torres and post player Katie Stamp. Senior Katelyn Sawyer returns to the team to add depth.

“I think our strength right now is our uptempo playing style,” indicates Hammerton. “The girls have been running the floor really well and enjoy playing this brand of basketball. The mixture of young girls with our returning older girls has given us the ability to play this fast-paced style. We also have been working really hard on pressure defense and hopefully this will be one of our strong points as well.”

2017-18 Schedule
Nov. 29 – at Mooney, 7:30
Dec. 2 – at Niles, 7:30
Dec. 7 – at Harding, 7
Dec. 9 – Fitch, 3:30
Dec. 13 – at Lakeview, 7
Dec. 16 – Canfield, 2:30
Dec. 20 – at Howland, 7
Dec. 27 – Poland
Dec. 30 – Shaw, 2:30
Jan. 3 – at Lakeside, 7
Jan. 6 – East, 2:30
Jan. 10 – Struthers, 7
Jan. 17 – at Fitch, 7
Jan. 20 – Lakeview, 2:30
Jan. 24 – at Canfield, 7
Jan. 27 – Howland, 12
Jan. 29 – at South Range, 7
Feb. 3 – at East, 2:30
Feb. 5 – at Edgewood, 7
Feb. 7 – Harding, 7
Feb. 12 – Mooney, 7
Feb. 14 – Ursuline, 7

Challenges
The Spartans must replace three double-digit scorers. Lauren Gabriele led the team in scoring (15.5 ppg), three-point percentage (31.8%), and rebounding (8.1 rpg). She also connected on 105 of her 145 foul shots (72.4%). Jenna Vivo took team-high honors in assists (4.7 apg) and steals (4.6 spg) while finishing second in scoring (12.0 ppg) and rebounding (5.7 rpg). Lauren Pavlansky closed out her prep career a year ago by averaging 10.1 points and 2.2 steals. Pavlansky also shot 80.9% from the foul line (38-47) while sinking 31.6% on her three-point attempts (31.6%). “We averaged about 48 points per game last year,” says Hammerton, “Thirty-eight points of that is not coming back. That just means that our girls will have to assume different roles and become more aggressive at the offensive end. That’s the beauty of coaching, your leading scorers graduate and (you) move on and you get to see the new players develop and gain confidence in that facet of their game.”

2016-17 Team Stats
Scoring Offense: 48.4
Scoring Defense: 46.2
Rebounding: 28.2
Field Goal Percentage: 41.3%
Three-Point Percentage: 28.5%
Free Throw Percentage: 61.9%

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