Girls basketball: Propst sisters on task for St. Albans
St. Albans lost five seniors from last season's 7-17 girls basketball team, but Coach Scott James welcomes back a host of young, but talented players as he enters his 11th season.
Leading the way will be sophomore Breanna Propst, a 5-foot-10 post player who led the Red Dragons in scoring (13 points per game), rebounding (10 per game) and blocks (3 per game) last season.
"She has great athleticism," James said. "For a girl that's 5-10, she's extremely quick and fast and athletic. She goes to the basket very hard, but in the offseason she developed a jump shot that will make her more of a double threat.
"If she can hit some outside shots, it will free up a lane to go to the basket for her."
The Red Dragons' other returning starter is Kaitlynn Propst, Breanna's older sister.
As the team's older player, Kaitlynn, a junior guard, will be counted on to provide guidance to an incredibly young lineup.
"I'm looking for some leadership from her with her being the oldest girl on the team," James said. "She's a hard nosed ballplayer. She's a good ball handler and a good defensive player. We're looking for her to have a strong season."
Sophomores Lexi Cooper, Addison Oliver and freshman point guard Torri Wilson will round out the Red Dragons' starting lineup as the season begins.
"We're kind of green behind the gills, but we're pretty excited about what this team is going to be about at the end of the season," James said. "Our younger kids got more and more playing time as the season progressed last season, so some of the younger girls have a lot of game experience."
So far, James likes what he sees from his freshman point guard, who played at McKinley last season.
"We're excited about her coming up but we'll have to be patient," James said. "She has a lot of instincts and she works extremely hard. She does a real good job."
Youth will dominated the Red Dragons' bench as well, with freshman guard Katelyn Fields and freshman post player Cameron Davis emerging as the team's sixth and seventh players.
"We've had excellent practices for two weeks," James said. "We had a scrimmage with Charleston Catholic and there was some good and bad involved with that, but it let us see some things we need to work on and answered a few questions for us.
"We've got a little depth with some incoming freshman. Fields works hard in practice and not only makes herself better, but makes everyone else better too. She's a sponge. She listens to what we say and she tries to do what we tell her."
Davis will provide depth and strength on the post.
"She's strong, still learning the position, but she's a hard worker," James said of Davis. "She's relentless inside at times."
In the short time that he's had to work with the team, James has been pleasantly surprised.
"I tell keep trying to tell myself and our staff that we need to be patient, but these girls are mentally tough and they come to work every single day," James said. "That will pay dividends in the long run if that continues.
"At first I thought a .500 season would be a great season, but now I'm to the point that .500 would be good, but I think we can do a little better.
"It just depends on how we work and if we continue to improve throughout the season. We need to come together as a team and there for each other and understand what family is about to be a team.
"If we do that, I think good things will happen."