The Indian River High School girls’ basketball program graduated four seniors from last year’s team, which went 9-11 overall. With those graduations also went some leadership that this season’s squad could certainly use.
Gone are Kealey Allison, Braydee Whitman, Trayona Nock and Fabrea McCray. Those four players were integral parts to the second-half success that saw the Indians win four of their final five games.
The 2018-2019 campaign will feature a mixture of talented underclassmen and a sprinkle of seniors that includes Julia Jordan.
“We graduated four seniors, and with them went that veteran leadership,” said new head coach Paul Weisengoff, who served as an assistant coach for the Indians last year. “Julia Jordan was a second-team All-Henlopen Conference selection last season. Other than that, we will be a young and relatively inexperienced squad.”
Weisengoff will be looking for Jordan to handle things in the low post at the power forward/center spots. Junior Kayley Belzner returns for the Indians and will be one of the off guards. Classmate Kaylah Briddell will be joining Jordan on the low blocks. Sophomore Lauren Meehan will serve as a combo guard who can also spend some time at the power forward spot.
A pair of newcomers will be counted on heavily to step in and help right away, while learning the varsity ropes. Sophomore Mikela Meehan — like her twin sister, Lauren — is a combo guard who will also see time down low. Freshman LeAnya Shockley will potentially be tabbed as the team’s starting point guard when the Indians take the floor in their opener.
“Briddell was a valuable player off the bench for us last year, but she is recovering from an injury right now,” added Weisengoff. “Lauren Meehan and Belzner played many meaningful minutes last year and will be relied on heavily this season.
“Our season will really depend on how quickly the freshmen and sophomores develop.”
The Indians will open the season with a heavy dose of “home cooking,” with four straight on their own floor out of the gates. IR will battle Worcester Prep (Nov. 30, 7:30 p.m.) and Delmarva Christian (Dec. 1, 5 p.m.) in their opening weekend Tip-Off Classic.
Their Henlopen Conference South Division slate will then take front-and-center, with meetings against Laurel (Dec. 4) and Woodbridge (Dec. 6). Both of those games will start at 5 p.m.
By Jason Feather