BRATTLEBORO — Following a devastating fall 2015 soccer season which resulted in the loss of three varsity basketball players to long-term injuries, the Leland & Gray girls hoops team will begin the season with only two returning varsity players.
The Rebels will host Arlington in tonight's opener at 6. Both teams lost in the Division 3 quarterfinals last season, with Leland & Gray (9-13) falling to Richford and the Eagles (12-10) being eliminated by Proctor.
Leland & Gray captains Rachel Borgeson and Jessie Stockwell, while only juniors, each have two years of varsity experience, which coach Terry Merrow will rely upon heavily to offer leadership and poise to the youngsters. Joining Borgeson and Stockwell as team captains is senior Jordan Gouger — she will be unable to play due to an injury, but her presence and support at team events will add additional leadership to the mix.
Juniors Caroline Tietz, Maddie Russ and Brittney Clark are expected to contribute quality minutes for the Townshend team. Teitz and Russ, from the post positions, are very good rebounders, while Clark can hit the 3 if left open. Sophomores Kelsie Bostrom, Morgan Stevens and Kassidy Wyman should settle into their roles and contribute as well.
The four freshmen on the Leland & Gray roster should turn some heads. Hannah Buffum, Maris Linder, Sierra Fillion and Julia Gleason, while young and inexperienced, will play a huge role in the season's outcome. Buffum, while big and strong, is able to play any position on the floor except point guard. Fillion is a hard worker who should excel from the wing position. Linder is small in stature, but one of the most fundamentally sound players to pass through the school in many years. Gleason, while also small physically, has proven to be lethal from beyond the arc if given a quality look.
Due to the injuries during the soccer season, Leland & Gray isn't fielding a JV girls basketball team. After hosting Arlington this evening, the varsity Rebels will welcome South Royalton (6-15 last season) and Windsor (11-11 last season) next week.
Listed below are other area rosters that were submitted on Wednesday:
BRATTLEBORO GIRLS BASKETBALL
Coaches — Paul Freed, Meghan Pacheco, Sarah Lynn. Manager — Gigi Purcell. Players — #1 Kai Boyd, #3 Megyn Ayotte, #11 Alexandra Livanis, #12 Devin Millerick, #13 Danielle Wood, #14 Kelsea McAuliffe, #15 Jaida Henry, #20 Meghan Sargent, #21 Morgan Derosia, #22 Hailey Derosia, #24 Shenise Taliaferro, #25 Gabrielle Carpenter.
HINSDALE BOYS BASKETBALL
Coaches — Eric Boyd, Carl Anderson, Joe Boggio. Manager — Elijah SImeon. Players — #4 Caleb Steever, #20 Josh Webster, #22 Dan O'melia, #23 Cole Swanson, #24 Matt Boggio, #25 Pete McCosker, #30 Nate O'melia, #32 Ryan Boggio, #41 Zach Lepisto, #42 Zachery Mitchell, #44 Kyle Rideout, #51 Trace Kirkwood.
HINSDALE GIRLS BASKETBALL
Coaches — Terry Bonnette, Alan Putnam. Manager — Emily Ricker. Players — #3 Samantha Lynch, #5 Jacqueline Atkins, #11 Monika Costello, #12 Jennifer Matuszewski, #13 Skyler Leclair, #15 Gabrial Leclair, #22 Kelsey Spindler, #25 Mariah Nichols.