De Soto girls finish first in summer league
Wildcats finish 7-1 in off-season play
De Soto played seven games in the Johnson County Girls Athletic Association, JCGAA summer league in Shawnee before the final showdown with an old rival.
The Wildcats, who finished 7-1 and first place in league play, defeated Immaculata 33-18 in an important game for the team. Immaculata had defeated the Wildcats during Kaw Valley League contests in De Soto and Leavenworth last season.
De Soto Summer League Coach Bob Heinen said that the Immaculata victory was one of the major signs of the team's improvement this summer.
"That was a game that they really wanted to win and they have developed a rivalry with Imac," Heinen said. "They played well together and the fact that they beat Imac gives them positive vibes going into next season."
With former DHS standout Tiffany Bernard lost to graduation, other De Soto players stepped up and contributed for the team. Sophomore center Ali Heinen continued her strong low post play while guards senior Tia Bernard and sophomore Lisa Lambert consistently created their own shots.
In addition to defeating Immaculata, the Wildcats also posted victories against Gardner-Edgerton, Olathe North, a JCGAA club team and KVL rivals Lansing and Mill Valley. Their lone setback during the season came against one of the two JCGAA club teams.
Other members of the first place team included junior guard Julie Beck, junior forward Katie Davis, freshman center Becky Davis, junior forward Emily Holton, sophomore forward Laurie Wilson and senior center Leanne Wilson.
Holton thinks that the Wildcats are starting to play with a great deal of unity.
"I think we've improved a lot with the way we started to work together," Holton said. "I think we'll be pretty good in the winter if we stick together."