This year’s Bishop Lady Broncos basketball team will make its debut tonight in a home game against the Lone Pine Lady Golden Eagles.
The basketball squad had a landmark year in 2012-13, going deep into the CIF playoffs before losing in the third round. The mental strength of the team was evident in Bishop’s 51-50 win over Bishop Diego.
This year is a whole new ball game, literally, starting with a smaller High Desert League. Desert seceded from the HDL for the Desert Mountain League; Frazier will not field a varsity girls basketball team this year, That leaves three league opponents for Bishop, Kern Valley, Rosamond and California City.
“Our strength this year is the talent we have as individuals,” said coach Brian Pennington. “Our weakness is our relative inexperience as we only have two girls with more than one year varsity experience.”
The Broncos did lose some seriously talented starters for this year. But two of the four players with varsity experience on the roster accounted for nearly half the 2012-13 team’s stats.
The returning varsity players are seniors Brooke Callahan and Beatrice Ramirez, junior Tamia Shoshone and sophomore Maria Jimenez.
Callahan and Shoshone scored a combined total of 526 points, nearly half of the Broncos’ season total, and pulled down a combined 470 rebounds, more than half of the team’s season total.
Juniors Miranda Barnes and Norma Ibarra with sophomores Cienna Martinez and Sabrina Barlow are up from Bishop’s junior varsity squad and will be joined by freshmen Kailey Parker and Little Eva Lent.
This Thursday, the team heads to Reno for tournament play, then hosts Mineral County early next week, Tuesday, Dec. 10. Next up: Whittell High School in Tahoe for a three-day tournament; Christmas break; a Jan. 2-4 trip to a San Diego Tournament and a Jan. 7 home game against the Tonopah Muckers – all before HDL starts, Friday, Jan. 17 at Cal City.
“We are looking for a good season,” said Pennington, “with goals to win league and go deep into the playoffs.”
The Bishop vs. Lone Pine game starts at 6 p.m. this evening, with the boys game following at 7:30 p.m.