South Girls 🏀
Volleyball season hits it's zenith tomorrow into the weekend but Fargo South's girls have gotten a jump on Basketball season with some open gyms. Their coach, Jason Smedhammer, was kind enough to answer some of this year's questions so while you wait for the few weeks that are left to go by, enjoy this year's Q & A!
I'm curious which memories stand out as the highlights of last year?
"Well, we’ve been such a young team the last few years, so there have been plenty of growing pains. One highlight from last year was that we were more competitive for longer stretches against the other EDC teams. Humorously, another highlight was that it was the first time since 2016 we didn’t have to make a pitstop at Carl Ben Middle School to pick up members of our team for road trips!"
How do you plan on building upon what you taught your returning players last season?
"One of our offseason focuses that we’re going to continue to work on once the season starts is more of an emphasis on the defensive side of the game and rebounding. If we want to continue to be more competitive, we must become more consistent in that area."
Did you take your team to any camps this past Summer? How did your team benefit from that?
"We did go to a number of team camps this summer, and it appeared that when we elevated our defensive energy and rebounding commitment, we were able to put together pretty long stretches of good basketball. Additionally, all team camps we attended helped with team chemistry."
Adie Wagner had a good Freshman season. How will you look for her to build on that this year?
"Adie had a fantastic year as she was our leading scorer for the third straight season and was named all-conference. That honor will definitely put even more of a target on her back for how teams defend us. She continues to work constantly on her game and takes these things as challenges to be met, so we hope she keeps getting better and better. We also expect her to be a rebounder for us from the guard spot, which she can and will need to do."
Who will need to step up to take some pressure off her and replace players that graduated or otherwise moved on?
"We’re still looking for a consistent secondary scorer. Our post players have shown flashes of doing that, but need to do it all the time, not just in stretches. We also have a couple of perimeter players who will need to be able to hit from the outside on a steady basis as well."
As things are today, is there a certain aspect of the game that you think will be the strength of your team?
"Hard to say for sure. Having a returning all-conference player we will definitely lean on her (Wagner), especially early on. I’d like to think that our emphasis on the defensive side of things will show up as a strength of ours, especially by the end of the season when it’s needed most."
Are there other players that have already shown you that they will be leaders both on and off the court this Winter?
"I would say Paige Schroeder has really started to blossom into a solid leader for us. Raechel Osborn has done a lot of outside help for the program too."
Are there any goals that you and your players have in mind that you would be willing to share?
"Right now, it is just trying to improve with every passing week in the hopes that come tournament time we are playing our best basketball."