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The Suburbanite
  • Young Green team tackles injuries, illness to pull out winning season

  • An extremely young Green varsity girls basketball team started the season not knowing what to expect. The squad had lost several key contributors from a group that upset Lake in a North Canton Division I sectional final last season, and the Bulldogs entered the new campaign with seven sophomores and two freshmen on the roster.

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  • An extremely young Green varsity girls basketball team started the season not knowing what to expect. The squad had lost several key contributors from a group that upset Lake in a North Canton Division I sectional final last season, and the Bulldogs entered the new campaign with seven sophomores and two freshmen on the roster.
    Point guard Erika Rector and forward Lexi Teodosio were the only seniors in the primary rotation for head coach Tracy Miller. As young teams commonly do, the Bulldogs struggled at the beginning of the season. With freshmen Lilly Carson and Madison Jackson receiving significant playing time and finding their way into the starting lineup by year’s end and sophomores McKenzie Black and Julia Guyton also starting games throughout the season, Green stumbled to a 3-7 record through their first 10 games against a challenging non league schedule and the first chunk of their Suburban League slate.
    Miller also pointed to injuries and illness in the early going as factors that slowed the team’s progress and efforts to build chemistry.
    “I thought we started off the season playing hard, but also with a lot of sickness and injuries as well,” Miller said.
    But Miller was quick to credit the players’ willingness to learn and build their skills in-season as reasons for the squad’s .750 winning percentage in its final 12 games.
    “Our most progress that we made was learning as the season went along,” Miller said. “Our three seniors stepped up and led us the last 12 games and Erika Rector, Tarah McCausland and Julia Guyton really improved a lot in the second half (of the season).”
    Rector was the top scorer in a 52-38 loss to 20-win Canton McKinley in a sectional final game and also topped her team with six rebounds despite being pressured all night by a rotation of athletic defenders sent her way by McKinley coach Pam Davis.
    Jackson also stepped up with two key baskets early in the contest as McKinley tried to build a large early lead and pull away from Green.
    “We showed a lot of improvement toward the end of the season, and we hung with McKinley the entire game but just fell short at the end,” Miller said.
    Summer looms large for the Bulldogs as they attempt to take their experience from playing as underclassmen this season and combine it with hard work at camps and open gyms, sweat equity in their strength and conditioning efforts and the toughness they developed taking their lumps early in their 2012-13 schedule and combine those ingredients into a winning mix.
    “We will go hard in the month of June,” Miller said. “I think the kids are excited to grow together this summer and get better.”