By Andrew Glover
PERKINS, Okla. —
Last season the Perkins-Tryon Lady Demons basketball team threw the ball inside to their post players Jordan Gorham and McKenzie Stanford en route to a Class 3A state finals berth and a 28-1 record. With Gorham and Stanford graduated, the Lady Demons will have to find another way to score points as they try to return to the state tournament in 2013.
“We have to come up with a whole different game plan,” senior guard Jeri Adkism said. “We have to learn a whole bunch of new plays because we don’t have Jordan and Kenzie anymore. We’re all small.”
P-T will have to spread the floor on offense and use cuts and rolls to get quality shots. The Lady Demons have worked on a new offense during the offseason after their championship loss last March. During the summer the Lady Demons competed in a couple of shootouts. Coach Jerry Burnett said his team is slowly catching on.
“We’re having to spread the floor and that’s something new for our girls,” Burnett said. “It’s hurt us this summer a little bit. We are going to stay patient with it.”
Adkism said it’s been tough changing their identity from a post-oriented offense to a drive and kick out.
“It will come together when November comes,” Adkism said. “Coach Burnett is working with us and talking with us. Basically letting us know we can make it to state again and just have to get out of our heads that Jordan and Kenzie aren’t there anymore to do everything for us.”
In most of the 29 games last season, Gorham and Stanford were responsible for more than half of Perkins’ points. This season P-T will need to be a more balanced scoring team. Senior Bailey Wensler thinks the Lady Demons have good young talent.
“I’m excited. It will definitely be different,” Wensler said. “It will be fun.”
Gorham and Stanford’s absence won’t just affect the offense but also the defense. Wensler, who is a guard and doesn’t stand taller than six-feet, will be the tallest player on the floor.
“With Bailey Wensler being the tallest person on the team, we usually have to stick her on post and have lots of backside help,” Adkism said. “Hopefully, coach will put us in a zone this year. If not, triangle two on some teams.”
The triangle and two defense will target the opponents best two perimeter shooters and the other three defenders will play zone in the lane in a triangle.
“Defense will be our key,” Wensler said. “We will definitely need to feed off of that.”
Though they will no longer have Gorham and Stanford, Adkism and Wensler knows what it takes to make the state tournament, and hope they can be an example to the younger players.
“We’ve been under the lights,” Adkism said. “We just have to pull everyone under our wing and put everyone on our back and get to the state tournament again.”