By Jeff Labine The Stettler Independent
Sydney Poapst is ready to play ball.
The Grade 12 student was one more than 30 potential players looking to join the senior girls basketball team at Wm E Hay Stettler Secondary Campus. The girls took to the court on Nov. 7 to show coach Kim Poapst exactly what they were capable of.
Sydney, who has played for the Wildcats in the past, said she really wants to make this season the best yet since it’s her last year in highschool and wants to play more consistently.
“I think we’re going to have a good team this year, better than last year,” she said. “We have a good group of girls who have been together for quite a while now.”
Sydney has played ball for the past 13 years and said it all started when her mother put her into a basketball camp. She said she stuck with the sport because of her competitive spirit and of course, the love of the game.
Last year the team headed to Cuba for a week of basketball training and a chance to experience different culture. Sydney was one of the players who were able to go and she said she learned a lot.
“It was really good, they were a lot better than us,” she said. “A big thing was you don’t need to have the best equipment available to be good. They had no souls left on their shoes and they had sandbags for pylones but they worked so hard. They were just so quick with everything they did.”
Kim Poapst said the turnout for tryouts was fairly high compared to previous years and echoed Sydney in saying this year should produce a strong team. She said what she wants from her players is experience, commitment and good communication.
She said each player has to earn their playing time so experience and commitment matters.
“Most of these kids went to Cuba with us last year in December,” she said. “Most are in their Grade 12 year so this is it for them so I think they will put their best effort in (because) they want to make it a fun and memorable season.”