Lady Spartans work on working together

After a rough start to their season, the girls varsity basketball team hopes to improve its teamwork and record.


Kaylin Knapp

During a Mini Tournament versus Francis Howell North, the Lady Spartans huddled up to talk about what improvements they can make. They are a young team, with only two seniors.

After a 42-38 victory over Ladue on Dec. 26, the Lady Spartans have hit a rough spot in their season, losing the last four games since. The problem, explains junior Hayley Allen, is with the lack of teamwork displayed recently.

“Everyone was concerned with their own personal shots, so they were just chucking up shots. We need to worry about the score of the game, and adding to the score, instead of box scores,” Allen said.

Scoring has been one of the key issues so far this season. The Spartans have only allowed an average of 47.2 points per game, the middle of the pack in the Gateway South Conference. The team has scored an average of 37.0 points scored per game, though, the lowest scoring average in the conference.

“People aren’t used to working as a team yet,” Allen said. “For most people, this is their first year playing on varsity, so it’s a large adjustment from JV to varsity style.”

Junior Chelsea Ayers, agrees working together will help the young team to improve their current 2-7 overall record. While it may take time for the team to adjust, Ayers says the team is taking steps in the right direction.

“Even though we lost [in Monday’s game against Mexico], we played with a lot of heart and passion,” Allen said.

In last Monday’s Warrenton Tournament, the Lady Spartans went up against Mexico, with a 47-35 loss. So while the Spartans put up a good fight, Mexico scored eight  three-pointers, an unusually high number in a high school game, Ayers said.

Moving forward in the season, the emphasis will be placed on teamwork and motivation. As the team chemistry develops, Ayers says that the coaches will be pushing the Lady Spartans more in order to make needed improvements.

“[Coach Brian Ricker] will make us more accountable for our mistakes, and he will be harder on us since we are such a young team,” Ayers said. “[Ricker] says we have to want to win; right now, it’s just the coaches who want it.”

While the team works on working together, Allen wants to improve on her own attitude and perspective in order to help the team as a whole. This means hard work ahead for Allen, as well as for the rest of the Lady Spartans.

“I need to make sure I’m giving 110 percent all the time. If I miss a shot or mess up, I need to keep going and keep hustling,” Allen said. “I need to play for my teammates, and not for myself.”

The Lady Spartans will continue to battle it out, as they take on the Timberland on Friday night.