Scottsdale 2018-19 girls basketball preview

Chaparral guard Anna Ostlie . (Independent Newsmedia/Josh Martinez)

The girls basketball season is underway across Scottsdale with many teams playing several games already ahead of the holiday break.

The Independent reached out to girls basketball coaches in the area to get their thoughts on the ongoing season and what they need to do to have a successful season.

All statistics from 2017-18 provided are via maxpreps.com and entries with no question-and-answer segments are because the Independent did not receive a response to a questionnaire sent to coaches.

Arcadia Titans

4A Desert Sky Region

2017-18 record: 26-4, 6-2 region (Reached 5A semifinals)

Coach: Ives Machiz (12th year at Arcadia)

Top returners:

Scoring: Sierra Montez, Sr. 5-4 guard (3.8 ppg); Celese Villaverde, Sr. 5-10 wing (3.3 ppg)

Rebounding: Villaverde (3.0 rpg)

Assists: Montez (1.5 apg)

Game notes: The Titans graduated a large senior class from a year ago.

Chaparral’s Jess Finney  (Independent Newsmedia/Josh Martinez)

Chaparral Firebirds

6A Desert Valley Region

2017-18 record: 26-5, 8-0 region (5A state champions)

Coach: Brian Porth (Eighth year at Chaparral)

Top returners: (Editor’s Note: Stats were through 18 games last year)

Scoring: Anna Ostlie, Jr. 5-8 guard (16.9 ppg); Jess Finney, So. 5-10 guard (11.7 ppg)

Rebounding: Finney (4.1 rpg); Ostlie (3.2 rpg)

Assists: Ostlie (2.3 apg); Finney (2.2 apg)

Coronado Dons

3A Metro East Region

2017-18 record: 13-9, 9-1 region (Reached first round of 4A playoffs)

Coach: Dexter Brown (First year at Coronado)

Top returners:

Scoring: Delaney Howard, Sr. guard (13.1 ppg);

Rebounding: Howard (2.7 rpg)

Assists: Howard (1.5 apg)

Desert Mountain Head Coach Alicia Sanchez. (Independent Newsmedia/Josh Martinez)

Desert Mountain Wolves

5A Northeast Valley Region

2017-18 record: 22-7, 9-1 region (Reached first round of 6A playoffs)

Coach: Alicia Sanchez (Third year at Desert Mountain)

Top returners:

Scoring: Kelsea Hurley, Sr. 5-11 guard/forward (11.6 ppg); Jaedyn O’Reilly, Jr. 5-10 guard (6.8 ppg)

Rebounding: Jamie Smith, Sr. 6-1 center (7.9 rpg); Hurley (7.6 rpg)

Assists: Hurley (1.9 apg); O’Reilly (1.2 apg)

Horizon Huskies

5A Northeast Region

2017-18 record: 16-14, 5-5 region (Reached first round in 6A playoffs)

Coach: Chris Young, 14 years experience (eighth year as head coach, second at Horizon)

Top returners: Jacey Carter, Sr. guard (11.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg); Madison Cabardo, Sr. guard (9.4 ppg, 2.9 apg, 1.4 spg); Sedona Anderson, Jr. guard (5 ppg, 1.7 apg)

What’s your team’s best attribute entering the season?

Our best attribute is our guard play, ball handling, and outside shooting.

What will your team need to improve on for this season to be a success?

Continue to improve defensively and staying disciplined.

Who are your team leaders? Why?

Our three seniors, Alyssa Alvarez, Jacey Carter, and Madison Cabardo. They are hard workers, they put in the extra gym time, they are extremely competitive, and they do things the right way.

What needs to happen for your team to consider this season a success?

A trip to the 5A final four

If applicable, what are your thoughts on the new region and classification?

It’s still early, but so far it seems like it will work well.

Notre Dame Prep Saints

5A Northeast Valley Region

2017-18 record: 12-15, 4-4 region (Reached play-in round of 6A playoffs)

Coach: Andy Kiltz (10th year at Notre Dame Prep)

Top returners:

Scoring: Kelly Ortega, Sr. post player (5.3 ppg); Zoe McCarthy, Sr. wing (4.7 ppg)

Rebounding: Alivia Pautz, So. wing (2.8 rpg); Ortega (2.5 rpg)

Assists: McCathy (0.9 apg)

Rancho Solano Prep Mustangs

2A Metro Region

2017-18 record: 4-15, 0-10 region (Did not qualify for 2A playoffs)

Coach: Katie Wyrowski, three years experience (first at Rancho Solano Prep)

Top returners: Allie Payne, Sr. 5-7 guard (11.4 ppg, 7.3 rpg and 2.2 spg); Maddie Liley, So. 5-7 guard (8.3 rpg); Leah Darwin, So. 5-3 guard (6.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg and 1.5 apg)

What’s your team’s best attribute entering the season?

We have an athletic group of young ladies. Many of the girls play multiple sports at a high level. What we lack in skill, we make up for in athleticism.

What will your team need to improve on for this season to be a success?

One area of improvement is seeing the floor and playing smart basketball. We need to learn to pick our shots.

Who are your team leaders? Why?

Senior and captain Allie Payne is a tremendous leader for our young team. Off the court she has been extremely supportive and on the court, Allie is a model of physical and mental strength and they do things the right way.

Who are newcomers to the varsity team who could make an impact?

We have a handful of newcomers to keep an eye on. Freshmen Izabela Potocnjak, Brynn Bleaman and Sarah Liley are all likely to make an impact.

What needs to happen for your team to consider this season a success?

This is definitely a growing year. The girls have all set individual goals, but for the team to view the season as a success, we need to grow and improve with every game — something I am certain we can achieve.

Saguaro Sabercats

4A Desert Sky Region

2017-18 Record: 12-13, 1-7 region (Reached first round of 4A playoffs)

Coach: Aria Ham (Second year at Saguaro)

Top returners:

Scoring: Alexis Lee, Sr. 5-7 guard (9.7 ppg); Julianne Carlisle, Sr. 5-3 guard (8.0 ppg)

Rebounding: Eve Rennie, Jr. 5-8 forward (4.7 rpg); Tranety Perkins, Jr. 5-6 guard (4.6 rpg)

Assists: Carlisle (1.9 apg); Perkins (1.2 apg)

Scottsdale Prep Spartans

2A Central Region

2017-18 record: 15-13, 6-4 region (Did not reach 2A playoffs)

Coach: Rich Polley (Third year at Scottsdale Prep)

Top returners:

Scoring: Mandi Nemire, Sr. 5-6 guard (15.1 ppg); Morgan Nemire, Sr. 5-6 guard (10.1 ppg)

Rebounding: Bessie Benham, Jr. (2.3 rpg); Mandi Nemire (2.2 rpg)

Steals: Mandi Nemire (3.2 apg); Morgan Nemire (2.7 spg)

Editor’s Note: Josh Martinez compiled stats and quotes.

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