SARAHSVILLE -Shenandoah head girls basketball coach Lynn Miley-Werry will have a very young basketball team to coach in 2012 as the Lady Zeps graduated some six seniors from last year's team that went 12-9.
While last year's team was heavy on seniors, this year's squad is anything but as the Lady Zeps have no seniors on their roster.
"Most of the girls that we need to replace were returning letter winners," said Miley-Werry of last year's seniors who all graduated with honors. "A few of the girls on this years roster got a little playing time last year, but they are very young and they will have to mature fast."
Renee Schwieterman, Sammi Schott, Kara Lee and Carissa Wukelich, Alexis Watson and Victoria Dollison all graduated from last year's squad.
This year's Shenandoah roster consists of eight juniors, six sophomores, and five freshman.
Miley-Werry is using the preseason practice and scrimmage time to find a rotation that will have the chemistry needed to be competitive in the always tough Pioneer Valley Conference.
The junior class that will be expected to assume the role of leaders for the Zeps include 5-foot-3 guard Taylor Arick, Lydia Fogle (5-8), Blake Hall (5-8), Arica Rich (5-3), Rachel Rossiter (6-0), Taylor West (5-6), Lorin Wheeler (6-0) and Amber Wickham (5-8).
Several of the sophomores will also be expected to assume key roles including Kaysey King (5-2), Jessica Long (5-4), Ashlee Wukelich (5-7), Lauren Dollison (5-4), Blair Brown (5-0), and Taylor Dudley (5-3).
"We've got a whole group of girls fighting for positions right now," said Miley-Werry, noting that no decisions have been made on starting positions. "We are trying to find some combinations and hopefully we can come up with a rotation of about eight solid players."
Freshman Ericka Bates (5-0), Vanessa Farnsworth (5-4), Kiley Miley (5-0), Hanna Ray (5-7) and Nicole Wickham (5-7) round out the Lady Zep roster. "The young girls seem to be catching on quickly," said Miley-Werry, who played college basketball at Morehead State. "We've got a good solid group coming up."
Last year's Lady Zeps were one of the best teams in the area from the charity stripe, converting an impressive 73.8 percent of their free throw attempts as a team.
Miley-Werry hopes to find her girls right in the middle of what figures to be a very tough PVC conference led by the Fort Frye Lady Cadets.
"It will have a lot to do with how soon were are able to mature," said Miley-Werry of her teams chances of competing for the conference title. "I think the PVC as always will be a real battle and I hope that we are right in the mix of the top two or three."