Girls basketball hopes to rebound from loss in state finals tournament

Cole Kristal, Sports Reporter

The Royals girls basketball team currently has a record of 2-0 with wins against the Osseo Orioles and the Moorehead Spurds. Last season, the Royals had a record of 29-3, and made it to the State Championship finals, but lost to Minnetonka by eight points.

In the offseason, the girls believe that teams are underestimating the Royals, because they lost some key players. The Royals are working hard to get wins, and prove teams wrong.

“Don’t sleep on Hopkins,” said Dlayla Chakolis, sophomore.

In practice, the Royals worked a lot on conditioning, weightlifting, and ball handling. They worked on getting the basics of positioning down for defense, and shooting in all different places around the court, while also working on the offensive motion. Off of the court, they worked a lot on team chemistry.

Last season, Coach Brian Cosgriff wanted the girls to focus on playing a fast game of basketball.

“We’re not big, so we have to make sure to play really fast,” Cosgriff said.

The girls like playing the fast paced offense. They like it because it is harder to stop if they are faster than the defense they’re facing.

On defense, Cosgriff wanted to pressure the ball more than they did last year. By putting pressure on the ball, and playing close defense, it causes the opposing teams to take bad shots, and make bad decisions.

With just over a week until the season starts, the Royals are putting in work. After losing twelve seniors, Cosgriff is looking at Paige Bueckers, freshman, Chakolis, Raena Suggs, junior, and Dee Dee Winston, senior, to step up and help lead the Royals.

“I plan to give my team the very best of my capabilities whether if it’s being a leader that sets good examples for them to follow after,” Winston said. “Bringing everyone together as a unit and making sure that we are all on the same page and have the same mindset which is to love and treat each other like sisters, and go out and win that state title.”

The Royals are focusing on the Osseo game, and working hard so they can start of the season on a high note. At practice, they’re working on getting in the paint, and having quality passes, so they can get some points on the board.

“[They’re] working their tails off, they’re doing a good job, and they have great team chemistry,” Cosgriff said.

The players love the game, but many players also play because of the good environment it brings, and because they love the girls they play with.

“I love my teammates. Whatever the outcome is of the season, I will still be proud that we have worked our butts off, and that’s all anyone can ask for,” Winston said.