Girls Basketball Swoops into the New Season
February 8, 2019
As winter sports have begun, Eaglecrest girls basketball has taken great strides to bond as a team and form relationships in order to be successful. Since bonding is such a critical aspect on and off the court, many opportunities have risen to create strong relations. The tournament in Arizona was one such opportunity and was a huge success for the varsity team as a whole.
Alexis Dixon’s favorite part of the tournament was that “two years ago we wouldn’t be able to go there [Arizona]. My freshman year nobody would ever think that Eaglecrest girls basketball would be in Arizona.” While that may have been the case two years ago, Eaglecrest was happily accepted this year. The tournament is called the Nike Tournament of Champions and it is held in Phoenix, Arizona from December 18-22. It is an elite tournament of 96 girls basketball teams from across the nation that are picked through an application process. Our boys basketball team has gotten chances to go out of state for tournaments such as this, but this was a first for our girls team.
Robby Gabrielli, the varsity head coach, commented, “We really enjoyed the trip. We went two and two which was our goal and it really ended up being a great experience for our girls. We have multiple girls who plan on playing in college and it gave them a taste of some of the competition around the country. It was just a great experience overall for bonding and comradery.” Over the years, girl’s basketball has grown from a small idea into a big picture. More support from the Eaglecrest community, more interest from girls that want to play, and an overall increase in skill has created opportunities for these athletes.
From a team stand point, the girls on varsity and the other girls basketball teams have also grown strong relationships with each other. The atmosphere between different teams is very positive and at the end of the day the girls all support each other. Maddie Unrein believes that, “We all play for each other and are together at all times. Even though there are different levels, we are all part of Eaglecrest basketball and represent the same program.”
Communication is a key factor in any team sport. Throughout games you can hear the girls talking to each other when they play, Gabrielli talking to them on the sidelines, and the girls on the sidelines talking to the girls playing. Games are loud, but the players never lose focus on what they’re trying to accomplish. Lydia Dickens’ focus for this season is “just getting the opportunity to really play varsity. This being my first year, I took on a new role, so I think just adjusting to that role makes me excited and being able to support my teammates.”
Support and communication skills come with building teams based on character and how people fit together. During the rigorous tryout process, the girls must showcase their skills and character throughout a series of days in camp. Gabrielli states, “Tryouts come around and we really just expect to pick out the girls who are the hardest workers. We try to find the girls that have the most skill, that exemplify great character and we test them with that in tryouts, and make teams based on our evaluations.” Watching the girls play proves how good of a try-out process this is.
From tryouts to being halfway through the season, our girls have put in an amazing effort this season already. The Eaglecrest community will continue to support our girls and we hope to see even more improvement throughout the rest of the season. The next home game is on February 1st at 5:30 against Cherry Creek. Here’s to a great season for our girls!