UNION CITY – The Lady Hawks are coming off their first ever 20-win season in school history last year as they challenged for a league title and was poised to make a nice tournament run until standout sophomore point guard Taylee Woodbury went down with a knee injury hampering Mississinawa in the sectional final.
Woodbury had surgery soon after and has been through rehab and therapy and is just now getting back into form as a basketball player as the 2023-24 campaign kicks off to try and lead her team again along with a full cast who all played last year as well. The Blackhawks return 50 points of offense from last year.
Here is a look at key returning players:
Taylee Woodbury is a 5-4 Jr., guard and was a 1st team ALL-WOAC & 1st team District 9 player. Woodbury is quick, fast and sees the floor very well and can also pull up and knock down the outside shot. She averaged 15.7 ppg and dished 5.8 assists, as she goes so will the Blackhawks.
Syenna Purdin is a 5-7 Jr., guard and was honorable mention in the WOAC last year. Purdin is a streaky shooter 8.3 ppg last year, but if she gets hot from behind the arch you can be in for a long night.
Brooklynn Seubert is a 5-10 So., forward and a lefthander who can give MV some size and strength inside and is capable of scoring on the block. She averaged 5 points and 5 rebounds last year.
Brenna Price is a 5-8 Sr., forward who came into her late last season and in the tournament giving the team some rebounding and added scoring from midrange to the rim. She averaged 8.2 points & 7.5 rebounds per game.
Kenzea Townsend is a 6-1 Sr., center and was 1st team ALL-WOAC & 1st team District 9. Townsend dominated in the paint last year and was nearly a double double every night pulling down 9 rebounds and scoring 9 points.
Ingrid Ojeda is a 5-2 Sr., guard and gives the Hawks a quicker defender off the bench and someone to help handle the ball on offense.
Other key contributors this year will be:
Paige Emrick is a 5-6 So., guard and one of the leading scorers on an 18-2 JV team last year.
Lily Geesaman is a 5-7 Fr.; guard coach who coach Paige is excited to see come out and so far she has looked very impressive as a freshman and could be a big contributor before the season is over.
Mississinawa coach Michael Paige will be hanging his hat on defense and wants to generate offense off turnovers and to get the tempo moving.
“One of the keys for this team is our ability to control the pace and flow of the game,” Paige stated.
The Hawks have set lofty goals and they’re not afraid to challenge themselves with winning a state title a primary goal and winning the WOAC a secondary goal.
The Lady Blackhawks have tried to put together tough non-conference schedule to help prepare them down the road.
Coach Paige believes his team has all the pieces necessary to be the frontrunner to win the WOAC this year.
He also sees Tri-Village with 3 returning starters and a wealth of experience as a team who will compete for the top spot in the conference along with Arcanum who is very well coached with a lot of talent.
Paige also likes Dixie and Newton and knows they will be very competitive and capable of knocking other teams off.