Girls Basketball Plays on Despite Setbacks

The City High girls basketball teams have faced challenges this season: COVID-19, quarantines, and stepping into new responsibilities. Take a look through their season thus far, and what they hope to accomplish.

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Natalie Green

Kacie Earl ’22 avoids a defender before jumping to score a layup in the fourth quarter.

Rachel Marsh, Photo Editor

A team struggling with breaks and COVID-19 restrictions but working to overcome and persevere: the story of the pandemic. The infamous story of trying to continue normalcy heard over and over again.

According to varsity assistant coach Lynsey Barnard, both the Junior Varsity and Varsity City High girls basketball teams have not changed their goals this season and are trekking on with a positive attitude.

Our JV team battles every day in practice and in games. We consistently ask a lot out of them. Not only do they have to get ready for their own games, but they also have to push the varsity girls every day as well,” Barnard said. 

In the pandemic maintaining a consistent, competitive, full roster comes with its challenges. The team as a whole has been quarantined multiple times and has recently entered yet another quarantine leading to zoom practices and independent practice.

COVID isn’t something that we have control over, and we can’t make excuses for being behind because we’re shut down or having multiple games a week and being tired because we had to reschedule games,” Barnard said.

This year, they had many new players come out, and players that they have had in the past, decide not to play because of the dangers of the virus.

 “There were potential starters and valuable returning players on all three teams that felt it was safer not to play basketball this season, and that’s something our coaching staff completely understands and supports, but still has added a layer of difficulty to the practices and games this season,” Barnard said.

The varsity girls are midway through their season and currently ranked 8th. They’ve beaten Liberty, Muscatine, Kennedy, Wahlert, and Xavier. They hope to continue to climb in rankings and continue into the postseason. 

It is great to be ranked this high, especially after losing three of our starters from last year. If we continue to keep playing as a team, handling our business on the court, and keep winning more games, I think we can be ranked even higher,” Kacie Earl ‘22 said.

Last year, the team’s consistent starters were Rose Nkumu, Paige Rocca, and Aubrey Joens, all of whom are now playing Division 1 basketball in college, leaving big spots to fill. This year the players have had to step up into not only those but also into the responsibility of preparing for games independently.

As much as we try, sometimes it’s hard to make a practice feel like a game,” said Georgia Kimm ‘22. “I hope that this year our team is able to make it to state again to show we’re just as good as last year.”