We have previewed the winter sport season over the last couple of weeks or so and the responses you see below come directly from the coaches who returned a questionnaire. As you will see, the winter season is comprised of soccer, wrestling and basketball. All three sports deserve equal attention.
We are proud that our site is the only one in Southern Arizona that covered (and is still covering) cross country, swim and dive, small-school soccer, golf, volleyball and football during the fall season. We’ve been covering both boys and girls in programs from the 6A Conference to the 1A Conference.
Head coach: Ben Katshor
“We are expecting things great things from several of our wrestlers this year coming up. A couple would be David Ens, who is going to be a sophomore, and David Arthur, who is going to be a senior. Promising new comers are Donavan Martell and Howard Post. It’s going to be a rebuilding year in some of our weight classes but that goes for every year. We’re very excited to compete with done great teams and individuals.”
EMPIRE GIRLS BASKETBALL
Head Coach: Mitch Shreves
2015-16 record: 13-9
Top Returning Players:
Emily Shreves (Sophomore) 359 pts, First Team Division III
Mackenzie Elkins (Sophomore) 342 pts, Second Team Division III
Cheyenne Owens (Senior)
Skylar LeDuc (Senior)
Reileen Fenn (Junior)
Top New Players:
Sarah Lewis (Freshman)
Joanna Scheidt (Freshman)
“After last year’s first winning season for Empire High School, we have eight returning varsity players and are adding a couple freshman players to strengthen our bench. We are pushing to make a run for state this year.”
DOUGLAS GIRLS SOCCER
Head coach: Mario Romero
2015-16 record: 7-9
Top players returning:
Leading scorer, senior Crystal Munoz
senior mid-fielder Yasmin Murguia
senior stopper Jocelyn Hurtado
sophomore goalie Brianna Guzman,
Top new player:
incoming freshmen mid-fielder Venecia Galindo.
“I have six returning starters from last year’s squad. These girls have been working hard these past few weeks. I’m hoping this year that we win those close games we lost last year that kept us from moving on to the post season.”
ST. AUGUSTINE BOYS BASKETBALL
Head coach: Mike Reyna
2015-16 record: 24-6
Finish: D-V second round
“After a successful 2015-16 season, in which the school qualified for state tournament for first time in school history, the 2016-17 team should compete and have a good chance of returning to the state tourney. Even though we moved up a classification, we return four starters and only lost one to graduation.
Seniors: Max Navarrete, Chance Strawderman and Jacob Dybas will lead the Wolves.
Junior Andrew Reyna is a capable guard that will support his Seniors.
Newcomer: Max Fimbres, who just recently signed to pitch for Pima Community College, is an athletic player who will help with boards, defense, and is able to finish at the rim.
Sophomore: Anthony Holguin is expected to fill role of defense specialist and is a high-energy kid who can contribute in many different ways.”
MOUNTAIN VIEW BOYS BASKETBALL
Head coach: Corey Duck
2015-16 record: 13-11
Top returners are Drew Cotton, Trevor Andresan and Mario Ybarra
Top newcomers are Evan Nelson, Elijah Elmer, Julian Molina and Caleb McCray
PUEBLO GIRLS SOCCER
Head coach: Ricardo Hinds
Finish: D-IV first round
Annalisa Verdugo and Wendy Mendoza are key returning players
“We as a team are capable of playing different systems (Possession, counter-attack, and a combination of both) well depending of the opponent.
We have made the playoffs four years straight. Last time the school made the playoff back to back was 20 years ago. We are very proud of this. I am very proud of all of them, they all have contributed at some point to the success of the program.”
DESERT CHRISTIAN GIRLS BASKETBALL
Head coach: Rich Peddy
2015-16 record: 27-6
Finish: D-IV quarterfinals
“We lost our four leading scorers to graduation last season; it will be an interesting year for us.
We have some young ladies who will help us this season, and more height than we’ve possibly ever had. 6’1″ Rikki Adams (So.), 5’11” Emma Blunk (So.) and 5’10” Sheylee Jones (Jr.) will all see plenty of action this year.
Seniors Isabel and Raquel Lane, along with Silvana Quintana, bring varsity experience into the mix. Sophomore Kati Vidal will bring us some much-needed speed and defensive tenacity from the guard position.
We expect some growing pains early on, but hope to be much improved by season’s end. We may be a year away, but expect to be a contender in the near future.”