The players and coaching staff of the Avon Lake girls basketball team seems to have gotten the program back on the right track. After suffering through a winless season in 2007-08 and managing just six wins in an injury plagued 2008-09 winter, Avon Lake wrapped up this year with a 15-7 overall record.
Head coach Frank Coughlin was pleased with his team’s 54-50 first round playoff win over Admiral King on Feb. 24.
“It was a really nice team win over a good opponent,” Coughlin said. “Even though they were seeded 10th, they had just beaten the No. 4 ranked team in the state (Mentor) the previous week. It was a physical game that included a number of runs and spurts by both teams.”
The Shoregals managed to make a number of foul shots (12-for-15 for the game and 8-for-8 in the fourth quarter) to earn the win. Bridget Lyons had 16 points and eight players contributed in the scoring. Lacy LeDuc and Bridget made all their foul shots in the last four minutes.
The Shoregals dropped a one-point heartbreaking loss (38-37) in the second round on Feb. 27.
Avon Lake struggled from the foul line (8-of-18). Lindsey Nock had nine points to lead the Shoregals in scoring.
Despite the disappointing finish, Coughlin is proud of his team’s hard work and nine-game improvement in the win column this season.
“It was definitely a good year for us ending up 15-7,” he said. “The JV team finished 14-6 and the freshman team reached the SWC Tournament. I think the program is in a good place right now.”
Coughlin credited seniors Jenna Goedde, Brianna Herschel, Alison Kenney, Lyons, Kaitlyn Mullen, Nock and Danielle Willis for their leadership.
“The senior players certainly had a lot to do with the level of success we were able to accomplish,” he said. “All seven individuals contributed throughout the year, not only from a talent aspect, but also, in terms of morale and work ethic. They set a nice example for the underclassmen to emulate.”
Stoops impresses at state
Avon freshman Whitney Stoops wrapped up her high school debut gymnastics season in fine form with four top-six finishes. Stoops tied for third on vault (9.4), tied for fifth on bars (9.2) and took sixth on the floor exercise (9.25). Her high scores enabled her to finish fifth in the all-around with 36.675 points to earn All-Ohio honors.
Magnificat sophomores Katie Cooney and Brianna Murnan, both Avon Lake residents, finished 11th and 30th in the all-around, respectively.