Lacking experience, Riverview girls will rely on sophomore guard Buchser
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Being young and inexperienced typically doesn't bode well for high school basketball teams. The Riverview girls, however, will turn to speed, talent and knowledge to make up for lack of experience.
Having only one senior, and two returning starters, coach Keith Stitt knows he could be in for an uphill battle, at least early on. The Raiders will compete in Class AA for the second straight season after making the WPIAL Class A semifinals in 2011-12.
“You have to try to be positive and upbeat with them,” Stitt said. “They are going to struggle, and we've talked about it. We play a tough schedule.”
Leading the charge for the Riverview offense will be standout sophomore guard Sadie Buchser, who averaged 13 points per game despite playing behind the now graduated Ashley Bruni. The sky is the limit talent-wise for Buchser, the coach said.
“She is a tremendously skilled offensive player,” Stitt said. “She can score. She can finish at the rim and she's a good ball-handler.”
The other returning starter is junior guard/forward Bree Patsy. She is the leading rebounder from last season, averaging nine per game. She also enters this season with a clean slate healthwise. It wasn't until the second half of last season that she fully recovered from an anterior crucial ligament injury that slowed her the first half of the season.
Rounding out the starting five for the Raiders will be junior guard Leah Sero, junior guard Hannah Larkin and sophomore guard Nicole Munion. The development and maturity of Munion could dictate how Riverview does this season.
Riverview's bench players could be a big strength as Stitt will have two girls nearing the 6-foot mark in 5-10 senior forward Madison Long and 5-11 sophomore forward Candice Ashbaugh. Also coming off the bench will be sophomore guard Nikki Polens. Described by Stitt as a defensive terror, Polens is someone who could provide quality minutes off the bench.
Stitt lost dependable and knowledgeable assistant Sean Knapp, who resigned after last season, but his replacement has plenty to offer this group.
Former St. Joseph head coach Dan Slain moves into Knapp's place after not being retained at St. Joseph. He guided the Spartans' girls to four straight WPIAL Class A playoff appearances.
“I'm really fortunate to have been able to bring in Coach Slain,” Stitt said. “It's kind of different in his style, and honestly he's getting his feet wet, and feeling his way through and trying to get to know the kids. His basketball knowledge will get greater as the time goes. I'm really fortunate to bring someone of his caliber in when I lost a high-quality assistant coach.”
D.J. Vasil is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- HS highlight reel: Moon names new football coach
- High school roundup: Greensburg Salem tops Mt. Lebanon
- Playoff tickets punched for some local hoop teams
- Ligonier Valley’s 3-sports standout nearing 1,000 career points
- Mt. Pleasant girls basketball team defeats Southmoreland, 67-30
- East Allegheny girls getting used to winning with underclassmen
- Versatile sophomore Jonczak has Highlands in playoff hunt after 3-16 season
- Serra Catholic’s Sieg learning to lead in senior season
- Connellsville holds off Kiski Area for big win
- Tipton helps lift Apollo-Ridge over Section 2-AA foe Shady Side Academy
- Gorman: Aloi eligible, ready to play