The success Delta High School's Lady Panthers have enjoyed the past several seasons has come under the guidance of Matt Hamm. Last year's 19-5 season followed a 20-5 campaign the season prior.
Hamm is in his sixth season as the Delta head coach and has eight in all in the basketball field.
Rosie Johnson is in her fourth season as the Delta frosh coach, with Craig Cerise taking over as the junior varsity mentor in 2013-14. Cerise will enter his fourth season with the Lady Panthers (a previous stint was as the head coach). Wayne Crick will assist in all three programs again.
Delta has 29 athletes who practice daily for the Panthers. Six of this year's players return as letter winners. Seniors returning as letter winners from a year ago include Shelby Curtis, Brittanny Brasfield, Reilly Quist and Katie Puderbaugh. Stephanie Sidor completes the list of senior players on this year's roster.
Juniors Desiree Smith and Haley Millard also return as letter winners from a year ago and will see considerable action this season.
Hamm has recognized three players who might be designated as impact players for Delta this year. Curtis will play forward, and possibly at a guard's position sometime during the season. Curtis has played four seasons on the varsity team and has lettered three of those years. "She brings a ton of experience and skill to the team," noted Hamm.
Brasfield's leading attributes for the Lady Panthers are toughness and grit at a forward's position.
Smith, as a junior, becomes Delta's shooting guard who is "a very gifted athlete that brings speed and strength," says Hamm.
Delta's overall success will come from a team effort that will likely include some key performances from a variety of players throughout the season.
According to Hamm, "We plan on being in contention for a fourth consecutive 4A WSL league title and competing in the playoffs again this season."
The Panthers will contend for the league title with perennial powers Glenwood Springs and Rifle. Throw in Eagle Valley, as all have built tough, reputable programs and are tough year in and year out.
Delta opened its season on Monday, Dec. 2, in Cortez. Results of that contest will appear in next week's paper.
The Lady Panthers will have the rest of the week off and are not scheduled to play again until Dec. 12 in tournament action in Fruita.blog comments powered by Disqus