Young. That’s the one word to describe the 2019-20 Waterloo High School girls basketball team.
The Pirates head into the season without a single senior on their roster, while only four players return with any varsity basketball experience.
“Experience is definitely going to be one of our weaknesses,” said ninth-year head coach Gabe Haberkorn.
The team lost 80 percent of its scoring and rebounding from last year’s team that went 14-9 and finished in a third-place tie with New Glarus (both went 4-6) in the Capitol South Conference.
Seven seniors in all graduated, including the program’s all-time leading scorer Brittney Limoseth (1,213 points), a first-team Capitol South selection, along honorable mention guard Sam Battenberg.
“It’s going to be hard to replace two of our best players and a great group of seniors,” Haberkorn said. “Those girls all had multiple years of experience.”
Forwards Brooke Mosher and Joslyn Wolff and guard Skyler Powers lead the way.
Mosher (6-foot-0) scored 58 points, grabbed 51 rebounds and blocked 17 shots in her first season of varsity basketball. Meanwhile, Wolff (5-11) scored 36 points and 28 rebounds.
But Powers (5-8) returns as the team’s leading scorer after pouring in 152 while grabbing 72 rebounds and 25 steals in 23 games.
“All three of them bring with them some very good athleticism,” said Haberkorn. “I believe that is one of our strengths, our athleticism.”
Haberkorn is hoping the experience that Wolff and Mosher had on the volleyball court, leading Waterloo back to the WIAA state tournament earlier this month, plays a role
“We hope that carries over and translates to some wins on the basketball court,” he said.
Juniors Ashley Gonzalez, Kaiya Albrecht and Gizelle Zimbric along with sophomore Alyssa Baumann will play key roles as well.
Haberkorn has also promoted four freshmen to the varsity: Julia Asik, Sophia Schneider, Ava Jaehnke and Maddie Webster.
“They’re going to be thrown into the fire,” Haberkorn said.
Two-time defending Division 3 state champion Marshall again will be the team to beat in the Capitol South. While the Cardinals lost leading scorer Mia Morel to a transfer to Madison Memorial, they still return first-team junior Anna Lutz and second-team junior Laura Nickel.
GIRLS BASKETBALL SCHEDULE
(Home games in all CAPS)
Tues., Nov. 19 Parkview, 7:15 p.m.
Thurs., Nov. 21 DEERFIELD, 7:30 p.m.
Mon., Nov. 25 PARDEEVILLE, 7:30 p.m.
Fri., Dec. 13 RIO, 7:30 p.m.
Fri., Dec. 20 Dodgeland, 7:15 p.m.
Fri.-Sat., Dec. 27-28 Fall River Tour.
Thurs., Jan. 2 Columbus, 7:30 p.m.
Mon., Jan. 6 HUSTISFORD, 7:30 p.m.
Thurs., Jan. 9 Cambridge, 7:30 p.m.
Tues., Jan. 14 Marshall, 7:30 p.m.
Fri., Jan. 17 WIS. HEIGHTS, 7:30 p.m.
Mon., Jan. 20 Johnson Creek, 7:15 p.m.
Thurs., Jan. 23 NEW GLARUS, 7:30 p.m.
Tues., Jan. 28 Belleville, 7:30
Fri., Jan. 31 CAMBRIDGE, 7:30 p.m.
Thurs., Feb. 6 MARSHALL, 7:30 p.m.
Fri., Feb. 7 HORICON 7:30 p.m.
Tues., Feb. 11 Wis. Heights, 7:30 p.m.
Fri., Feb. 14 New Glarus, 7:30 p.m.
Mon., Feb. 17 Markesan, 6 p.m.
Thurs., Feb. 20 BELLEVILLE, 7:30 p.m.