The Wiley Lady Panthers were just under .500 last year registering a 9-11 overall season record, but more importantly really struggled within the very tough Hi-Plains League where on a given night any team can beat the other. It is one of the most highly competitive teams in the state in the 1A division and last year the Wiley group ended up in the basement with an 0-7 record.
The McClave Lady Cardinals under the helm of head coach Brianne Howe who is beginning her fourth year at the helm was a tough team to deal with a year ago as they won the District Tournament over Kit Carson, 30-28 and then qualified for the 1A state basketball tournament with a 35-25 win over South Baca.
The Kit Carson Girls’ Basketball program is a storied program and its due in very large part to the dedicated work of Sara Crawford who is entering her 19th year as the head coach of the program. She’s been a part of the Lady Wildcats for nearly 30 years.
The defending 1A Boys’ Basketball State Champions from 2021, the McClave Cardinals, arguably lost the best guard in 1A a year ago in Eduardo Verdu (16.1 ppg; 3.0 apg; 3.4 spg), an exchange student from Spain, and a strong, big man from Italy, exchange student Ricardo Cazzaniga (9.8 ppg; 4.9 rpg).
Sixth year Kit Carson head coach Damon Dechant will bring a more experienced team to the floor this year as his 2021-22 team went 5-15 overall in the season and were just 1-5 in the league placing in the basement. Dechant hopes for better results this year as the Wildcats just lost 2 seniors and will return three starters.
Head coach Kendall Pelton will enter his second year at the helm of the Cheyenne Wells Boys’ Basketball program. Pelton inherited a stunning group of athletes who have had tremendous success on all athletic playing venues including the football field, the basketball court, the track and the baseball diamond.
Last year the extremely young Cheyenne Wells Tigers made huge gains in the program as they finally, after 44 years took their program back to the state tournament. It was a Cinderella season for mostly very young, but talented, underclassmen and a couple of seniors in Sydney Dickey and Erin Minton who metaphorically put those youngsters on their backs and carried them down the stretch.
It was not the usual quality season for the Eads Girls’ Basketball program a year ago as they suffered through a dismal 4-16 record and finished in the cellar of the Hi-Plains League with a 0-5 record.