Northwood girls get off to 1-2 start
MINONG -- Following a 12-10 season last year, the Northwood girls basketball program has shown signs that it will be improving on that record. "I think we will compete for the top few spots in the conference and hope to advance deep in the tourna...
MINONG -- Following a 12-10 season last year, the Northwood girls basketball program has shown signs that it will be improving on that record.
"I think we will compete for the top few spots in the conference and hope to advance deep in the tournament," said Northwood coach Jason Schultz.
Schultz begins his fourth year at Northwood with a 24-41 record. He is joined by assistant coach Russ Albano.
In the still-early season, Northwood is off to a 1-2 start, with losses to South Shore and Prairie Farm and a win Tuesday night over Shell Lake.
The Evergreens, who completed play in the Central Lakeland Conference with a 7-5 record before a loss to Drummond in the second round of the WIAA playoffs ended Northwood's season, will bring back many familiar faces to the court this year.
Gone for the Greens is guard Katie Witte. Also absent from the roster will be All-Conference junior forward Ashley Scheller, who is out with an injury. She'll take with her 12 points and 10 rebounds per game.
Looking to pick up the slack will be returning starters, seniors Brenna Balcsik, Shauna Ruud and Alicia Block. Balcsik, an All-Conference guard averaged six points per game, while Ruud, who has earned All-Conference honorable mention nominations the past two years at the forward position, brings seven points per game and five rebounds per game. Ruud is joined by fellow forward Block, who adds four points per game and four rebounds per game.
The 'Greens will also look toward juniors Taylor Fellbaum, Ashley Albano and Erin Okonek this season. Last year, Felbaum, a guard, averaged six points, five rebounds and three steals per game. The forward Albano averaged seven points and four rebounds per game.
Newcomers for Northwood include sophomores Ashley Blegen and Janie Murray and junior Kristene Goettle.
Schultz believes this lineup will play hard-nosed, aggressive defense with the ability to score from the inside and the outside. The Northwood coach also expects his team to show its experience and skill at mid-range shooting and on defense, while showing some limitations with rebounding and ball handling.
These are areas the Greens will need to overcome in order to contend with conference foes Clayton, Siren, Cameron and Clear Lake.
"Everyone will be tough to beat," Schultz said. "We hope to compete well in our conference. One of our goals is to win our regional."
Nov. 16 -- at Birchwood (W)
Nov. 28 -- vs. South Shore (L)
Dec. 1 -- vs. Prairie Farm (L)
Dec. 5 -- at Shell Lake (W 50-32)
Dec. 12 -- vs. Cameron
Dec. 15 -- at Clayton
Dec. 21 -- at Clear Lake
Jan. 2 vs. Drummond
Jan. 4 -- vs. Turtle Lake
Jan. 12 -- at Frederic, 6 p.m.
Jan. 16 -- at Prairie Farm
Jan. 19 -- vs. Shell Lake, 6 p.m.
Jan. 23 -- vs. Webster
Jan. 26 -- at Cameron, 6 p.m.
Jan. 30 -- vs. Clayton
Feb. 2 -- vs. Clear Lake
Feb. 6 -- vs. at Luck
Feb. 8 -- at Turtle Lake
Feb. 16 -- at Siren, 6 p.m.