Lady Buffs open hoop season at Coal Miner Classic tournament

By Marlys Good

Ready or not, the Greybull Lady Buffs will open the 2018-19 hoop season at the annual Coal Miner’s Classic hoop tournament in Wright this weekend.

Coach Jeff Hunt has three starters back from last year, two of them having started the previous year also; six of the Buff returnees have been playing at the varsity level for two or three seasons.

“We have a lot of experience on the roster. We will be very quick; we have some speed on this team, and we also bring back two of the best scorers in 2A basketball,” according to Hunt.

Returning varsity players include Kendall Wright, two-year starter, two-time all-conference and all-state last year; Tatem Edeler, a two-year starter and on the all-conference team as a sophomore, she was injured last season and missed several weeks of play; returning starter Payten Sorensen; Emma Mercer, who started in place of her injured teammate last season; Morgan Haley and Kendall Stephens, two-year varsity players, and Hannah Klitzke, Shayla Cheatham and Monique Valasquez.

The nine are among 22 hopefuls being put through their paces as they shore up their individual skills and work on getting better and stronger every day.

“This (22) is a bigger number than we’ve had in a long time,” Coach Hunt said.

Looking ahead to this weekend, Hunt said, “This is a good time for us to see where we are at. We’ll play some tough teams – Lusk had a great season last year and brings back some really good players and Wright, as always, will be a tough matchup for us. We’ll work on our girls playing together as a team. We have a couple of younger girls who need to gain some experience early; this will be a great opportunity for them to work with the older, more experienced girls. We should be a very tough team again this year.”