Editor’s Note: This is one in a series of previews of area high school basketball teams.
Greg Edwards has a lot of new pieces to fit into place in his first season as the Boyle County girls basketball coach.
The Rebels (12-15) lost 33 points out of 51 points the team averaged per game last year to either graduation or players choosing not to play this season. For Boyle to do what Edwards hopes his team can do, the coach said it is going to take maximum effort and teamwork every day.
The new coach is promising a faster style of play that should benefit his team, which consists mainly of guards at the veteran level.
“We have been working hard to this point in the preseason focusing a lot on the fundamentals of basketball. I am not going to promise wins, but I do know that we will play hard and will be a fun team to watch,” he said. “We are going to try and play an up-tempo style of basketball and be aggressive on defense.”
The biggest loss for the Rebels is from guard Kendra Ross, who led the team at 15 points and seven rebounds per game last year and had 44 assists.
While Boyle did lose a lot of scoring and rebounding, Edwards does have players with experience. But he said no one individual will be able to do it on their own.
“We are getting good senior leadership from Michelle Howell, Sara Jane Tamme, Megan Sutton and Kyla McGirr, and we have several underclassmen who are vying for playing time,” he said.
Sutton is the leading returning scorer and rebounder for Boyle after averaging six points and three boards a year ago, while McGirr and Howell averaged three points per game.
Edwards also is expecting contributions from Chelsea Gill, Natalie Settle, Michaela Megilligan, Hannah Harris, Sadie Stevens, Lauren Richards, Danielle Lawson and Kalin Bottoms.
Player to Watch
Howell has missed parts if the last two seasons with knee injuries, but played on a select team after her sophomore season. If she can stay healthy, she should be a valuable asset for the Rebels.
Megilligan saw some action as a sophomore, averaging three points a game, and will be counted on to provide some depth the Rebels.
Keys to Victory
Edwards said the key for Boyle is “playing up-tempo and rebounding.” If the Rebels, who are guard heavy this year, can push the pace that should help them score points and keep them in games. “We will need to become efficient on the boards because we are not a very big team. I think we will be able to develop a deep bench and we will need everyone to maintain our style of play,” he said.
“Our biggest concern is rebounding,” said Edwards. Sutton is the top returning rebounder, and no other player had more than 1.5 rebound per game.
Top Returning Players
Megan Sutton, Sr. G, 6 ppg, 3 rpg.
Michelle Howell, Sr. F, 3 ppg.
Kyle McGirr, Sr. G; 3 ppg.
Michaela Megilligan, Jr. G; 3 ppg.