The wins were rolling in for all of the Avon Middle School girls’ basketball teams this season. Both of the seventh grade teams won championships this year.
The seventh grade non-conference team ended the year at 15-1. Head Coach Joe Schafer knows the girls will continue to work hard to improve for next year.
“The quality of the kids, and the improvement during the season as a team, really made it special for me,” Schafer said. “I also think the girls enjoyed the experiences and learned what they need to do in the off-season to become better players.”
The team averaged 31 points a game and held opponents to an average of 13 points a game all while playing nothing but man to man defense. This accomplishment shows how many girls stepped up for the team.
Leading the team was point guard Regan Betts, who led the team in scoring, assists and steals. Also putting up big numbers was guard Katie Malloy. Malloy hit double digits a few times and was second on the team in assists.
“The amazing thing about Betts is that she was a very unselfish, true team player,” Schafer said. “Malloy was our tallest player, and watch out if she continues to enjoy the game because she has the ability to play multiple spots on the floor.”
Ellen Michelic led the team in rebounds. Morgan Traine, the team’s captain, was right behind Michelic in rebounds.
“Ellen Michelic is a player any coach would want,” Schafer said. “She gave other teams fits and her versatility gave us a lot of options. Traine led by example and competed every time she was on the floor.”
Several other players led the team in other ways, even if they were not leaders in different stats.
“Haley Gannon was a silent leader for us, who improved greatly,” Schafer said. “Besides these girls we had Afnan Kayhat and Nour Kayhat who came off the bench and contributed countless times. Rachel Digman played good defense and got the free throw line a lot.
“Jessica Shook got hurt in our semi-final game but made big shots and helped us stay on top during the season. Lena Lopez never played basketball before this year but learned and contributed to our team.”
Schafer knows that the success the team had this season will help the future of the program.
“These girls have a lot of talent and if they put the time in and play together as a group in the off-season, Avon girls basketball will be on top for awhile,” Schafer said.
The seventh-grade conference team went 17-0 on their way to a West Shore Conference (WSC) championship. Head Coach Bill Barnum contributes the team’s success to their hard work and dedication.
“The team was talented and worked very hard,” Barnum said. “They never gave up on themselves, especially in the tournament. It seemed that the more pressure they had on them, the better they performed. They were really able to deliver in the tournament.”
Sierra Davidson led the team in points, rebounds, steals and assists. Davidson averaged 10.5 points and 15.5 rebounds a game. Brianna Conroy averaged nine points and 6.5 rebounds a game, Olivia Schneider scored six points and grabbed nine boards a game and Jessie Yurkovich averaged 5.7 points a game.
The team was dedicated all season long, and Barnum knows that’s the reason for their success.
“The team was very dedicated and very hard working,” Barnum said. “I’ve been coaching the team for four years now, and this team really stood out to me. They’re the hardest working team I’ve ever had.”
Barnum realizes the success the team had this year will only continue as they get older.
“With the talent on both seventh grade teams, and the strengths of both teams, it should really help the Avon program in the future,” Barnum said. “We had good size, I believe the tallest players in the history of the program, and had very good athletes.”