Lady Eagles dazzle on basketball court to jump start season
Two Eagle River’s Lady Eagles are proving to be an unstoppable force as they open the hoops season steamrolling their way through opponents with crushing fierceness.
Under the guidance of a new coach and with the point hound duo of Casadi Wunderlich and Tyra Michel, the Lady Eagles show all the signs of pulling off a victorious season on the hardwood with post-season bliss twinkling in their eyes.
With a 4-0 record, 2-0 in conference play, first year Head Coach Erica Shelby is not ready to talk post-season just yet and said for now the Lady Eagles are taking it game by game, incorporating new techniques and bringing it back to fundamentals when it comes to practice.
“We’ve got a lot of coachable kids,” Shelby said. “There are kids that we have with experience, and we have some new talent but they have been working so hard at practice being coachable. That’s why we’re getting these early conference wins.”
Because some of the kids live far away from the school, transportation issues make practice time tough and forces both the boys and the girls teams to share a gym for practice. That doesn’t discourage Shelby as she tries new practice elements including learning to think with self-motivated decision making, and meditation and drills to be done off the court as well.
“Our main focus, especially early on in the season, is just fundamentals. It’s like a basketball camp,” Shelby said. “We’re working on proper form for lay-ups. We’re working on those little things like pivots, talking on defense, moving our feet; we’re working on rotation so it’s more of a basketball clinic practice.”
Practice has definitely been paying off for the Lady Eagles as they took a pair of conference wins in their first week of regular season play.
Friday the Lady Eagles traveled to Noxon, toppling the Lady Red Devils 47-44.
After coming out of the first frame behind, Two Eagle River pushed it into high gear sealing the deal with two big quarters including a final 14 point, eight-minute romp.
Wunderlich led the contest in points with 17 and Michel added 12. Misty Mendoza chipped in 9.
Saturday the Lady Eagles picked up another win against Hot Springs at home, 52-40.
Along with Wunderlich and Michel, Shelby said Mendoza has also signed her name on the leadership ledger with many more Lady Eagles making impressions.
“I’m really looking forward to watching Casadi and Tyra,” she said. “Shay Andrew has been such a spark for us, she has just so much energy. Misty has been a great leader both on and off the court.”
With a big season ahead Shelby is taking it in stride, hoping to keep the fire lit and will continue to pace the girls working on the basics along with instilling confidence among her Lady Eagles.
“We’ve got some good girls and we need to keep working,” she said. “We’re slowly building and we’re building on what they did last year. We’re going to keep building and we’re slowly going to go up, up, up.”
The Lady Eagles will continue the hard work in practice mode throughout the winter break and will return to host Victor Jan. 3.
Two Eagle River 9 15 9 14 – 47
Noxon 12 10 11 11 – 44
Casadi Wunderlich 17, Tyra Michel 12, Misty Mendoza 9, Kaci Ducharme 4, Naomi Stevens 3, Shay-Lyn Andrew 2.
Two Eagle River – 52
Hot Springs – 40
No box scores or individual stats reported.