The Lady Indians varsity girls’ basketball team trudged through December without tasting victory. Three games and one scrimmage in five weeks just isn’t enough time for a team to gel. But the New Year promises the team plenty of opportunities to right its ship.
They lost to the Lady Bulldogs 49-29 on Jan. 3, dropping their record to 0-4 (0-3 in the conference) but have two months and at least 17 games left in the season. And that kind of action is just what the doctor ordered, according to Head Coach Summer Chorman.
“We came off the break a little rusty but we’re heading in the right direction,” Chorman said. “The good thing is we play some games back-to-back. We have such a young team that the experience will help them out.”
Indian River will play five games over a nine-day span (Jan. 6-14) and two games a week for the remainder of the season. They play 11 January games and seven in the month of love, giving the Lady Indians plenty of time for an about-face. Of the remaining 17 games, all but one are conference games.
The challenge presented to the Lady Indians is that the freshman- and sophomore-dominated team has to elevate their game to compete at the varsity level.
“Being so young, most of these girls aren’t used to this level of competition,” said Chorman. “They understand the game and know what they’re supposed to do on the court. But they need to do it on a consistent basis. They need to play like varsity players.”
Junior point-guard Kiarra Graves led the Lady Indians with a team-high 11 points, including two three-pointers, against Laurel, but they need more production from the rest of the team.
Charne Rayne and Marnisha Mitchell, combined with Graves, give Chorman three quick-penetrating guards. And once they begin to routinely execute, the rest should fall into place.
“Our guards are helping take some of the pressure of Michelle (Givans) and driving the lane allows her to get open,” explained Chorman.
Drive and score, or drive and dish for the score — in addition to Givans, Indians River has a few other post players. Amanda Mayfield and Jasmin Holden give them two more seasoned forwards. Mayfield played mostly as a backup on last season’s team and Holden started on the JV squad but also saw time on varsity.
Indian River will host Delmar and Lake Forest on Jan. 6 and 9, and travel to Smyna on Jan. 10. Each game will start at 6 p.m.
“We’re playing teams that I know they can beat,” Chorman noted. “We just have to take one game at a time.”