LOCUST GROVE —
The Lady Pirates have simple, but high expectations for their upcoming season.
Juniors Mrittanie Church and Sydnie Pierce said winning games is the expectation for the fast approaching season.
Locust Grove ended the season last year with an 11-12 record after losing to Muldrow in the regional tournament.
The LG girls have not ended a season with a record above .500 since the 2008-09 season, when they went 16-6.
“I have high expectations, but my two main ones are to work as a team and win more games” Church said.
Locust Grove only graduated two starting seniors, Sabina Burton and Taylor Loffer. Both were big assets to the team.
Loffer led the team in points per game(13.8), total points(357), rebounds(94), assists(99) and steals(96). She had a 65% free throw percentage.
The Lady Pirates will again start only two seniors.
Seniors Becki Hendrickson and Shelbie Hurry will try and help the team replace Burton and Loffer.
Locust returns Pierce, the team’s second leading scorer last season, averaging 5.8 points a game.
“My roles have changed a lot from last year,” Pierce said. “I have to be more of a threat offensively and be a leader on the floor. I have to be consistent and do my part.”
The Lady Pirates’ struggled with turnovers last season. Their starting five turned the ball over 297 times.
The group also had trouble beyond the arc, only shooting 29% as a team from three point range.
Junior guard Bailey Holman made 39 three-pointers last season and is is considered to have the most range. Locust Grove has already had injury problems.
Junior post Kelsey Stealer is out all season with an ACL injury, while and Pierce is already nursing an ankle injury in the pre-season.
Nevertheless, the team is eager to overcome existing obstacles to achieve a successful season.
“Ultimately, I want the gold ball,” Pierce said. “Who doesn’t want their season to end with that.” The Lady Pirates their season at home Nov. 27 against Salina.