With the Christmas break over, the Kwalikum Kondors senior girls basketball team looks to keep winning in 2016.
Practising through the break, including an entertaining game that saw them pull out a last second win at the KSS Alumni tournament, the team was able to work on a few things through the break.
A tournament win just before the Christmas break was a big step forward for the Kondors, who were short handed through the tournament but found a way to get it done.
“We’re excited to kick off the new year,” head coach Butch Gayton said. “We were able to get in the gym and keep that rust away, which is always important.”
“The nice thing for us was that we had a good number of girls who were around through the break, so we got to do lots of good things on the floor as a unit. We made some adjustments, worked on a few things and prepared ourselves as best we could for some of the challenges we’ll be facing for the remainder of our season.”
The first challenge comes tonight at home, when the Kondors host the Wellington Wildcats. They beat the Wildcats in a close game in their first tournament of this season.
They’ll expect much of the same this time around but have the benefit of those practices over the break.
“We know what to expect with them,” Gayton said. “Wellington is a scrappy team and it’s always a battle against them.”
“We’ve beaten them already this season so we know that we’re capable of that, we just need to make sure we can do those little things we did in the first meeting, to have that same sort of success against them this time around. We worked on lots of little things over the break and I think that’s going to go a long ways in helping us out.”
From this point on, the senior girls will be looking to improve on their league record in hopes of getting a good seed for the North Island tournament.
The path to the Island Championships will be a tough one but Gayton said his girls will be more than ready to deal with the road ahead of them.
“We’ll be ready,” Gayton said. “We’ve learned through games that we’re a versatile team. We can have girls in different spots than what they’re normally used to and we can have success with that, which is nice.”
“If we need to mix things up when the going gets tough, we don’t have to worry about what’s going to happen because we’ve done it and they’ve shown they can do it. We’ll just need to take it one game at a time, make sure that we keep our heads and continue to play the way we’ve played all season so far and I think we can have some pretty good success.”