While Lincolnton’s girls varsity basketball team was winning its first Southern Piedmont Conference championship in over a decade the junior varsity Lady Wolves were having a stellar season of their own.
The junior varsity Lady Wolves finished the year with a 13-1 overall record and finished perfect their conference games with a 6-0 record.
“They gelled together this year,” Lincolnton junior varsity coach Ann Anderson said. “Last year we were very successful as well. That success allowed me to play these kids as ninth graders in the games last season to get them time on the floor. That built up a lot of their confidence because they knew, from last year, that they could win games.”
Several schools in the SPC didn’t field junior varsity girls basketball teams. The Lady Wolves played East Lincoln, North Lincoln and West Lincoln twice each in conference games as a result, and played each team twice more in a nonconference setting. Lincolnton split its nonconference series with Forestview and picked up its lone loss in the first game of the season.
The Lady Wolves had four different players score more than 50 points on the season. Kaniyia Brown led the team with 92 season points, followed by Courtney Campbell’s 90 season points. Mikayla McDowell scored 80 season points and Myrical Delacy-James added 70 points.
“I preached to them that we wanted to be a team that was aggressive and shared the ball,” Anderson said. “It was going to be a total team effort. There wasn’t going to be a ‘superstar.’ They understood my philosophy of what we wanted the team to do. We had a lot of kids scoring and quite a few assists so everybody had a chance to score.”
Brown led the team in steals and assists, with 51 and 24 respectively.
“She was exceptional on defense with getting us steals and fast breaks this season,” Anderson said. “We probably had more fast breaks this year than we’ve had in a year or two, with our foot speed.”
Lincolnton’s varsity team is graduating nine seniors from its 14-man roster. Anderson anticipates that many of her junior varsity players will move up, but that several of this year’s freshmen will see more time on the junior varsity squad.
we had some really talented ninth graders on the floor. they got to have quite a bit of time in every game. “I’m hoping for more success next year as they mature and learn the system,” she said. “I have enough ninth graders that got some experience on the floor that we should have a pretty good core starting next season. And you never know who’s going to come out that is new to the school. You can have someone special step on the floor from a group that you haven’t expected.”