Basalt still boasts plenty of firepower |

Basalt still boasts plenty of firepower

For most basketball teams losing two-thirds of its scoring punch would be a problem.

That’s not the case for the Basalt girls. According to first-year coach Terry Kappeli, the 2003-04 Longhorns have plenty of offensive weapons left in their arsenal.

“Like I’ve told everyone, I have nothing to compare this team to,” Kappeli said. “All I know is we have some talented players, and we’ll continue to play Longhorn basketball.”

Which means Basalt, which ranked ninth in the Rocky Mountain News preseason poll, will continue to press defensively, force turnovers, and use the fast break as their primary offense.

Under former coach Debbie Alcorta, who was dismissed in the offseason, the Longhorns came within one point of advancing to the title game last season. Basalt fell 41-40 to eventual state champ Machebeuf.

Class 3A all-stater Autumn Caughern, who transferred out of state, Mariah Mulcahy, who graduated, were both big parts of that run. The Longhorns do, however, have plenty of other talent back this season.

Returning lettermen Lauren Redfern and Rochelle Moebius, both seniors, will start in the frontcourt. Redfern, in particular, is a force inside and averaged 16 points per game last season.

They will be complemented by 5-foot-8 inch senior Amanda Schmidt at the other forward position.

Kappeli also has the luxury of a pair of veteran guards. Senior Brittany Pollock, a 5-6 senior, will run the offense and junior Deanna Spracher can fit in at both the point and shooting guard positions.

And, when the need arises, Kappeli can call off the bench a deep pool of talented underclassmen.

Up front, Allison Brumet and Lindsey Soucie, both 5-10, can play big forward or center. The two sophomores will be challenged for playing time by freshman Cassie Meyer, who also measures 5-10.

Backup guards include junior Kelsea Mulcahy, Mariah’s younger sister, and freshman Annie Schwener.

When it comes to how the rest of the Class 3A Western Slope League shapes up, Kappeli said he sees Basalt among the WSL’s top teams.

“I see us, Roaring Fork, Eagle Valley and Cedaredge in the hunt. The big thing for us to be successful is to decrease our turnovers, rebound the ball and hit our free throws.”

Basalt’s season starts today with a varsity girls-boys nonleague home doubleheader against Rifle.

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