The Dupo High School girls basketball squad returns a solid group of players from last year’s team and hopes to continue the improvement seen late in the 2017-18 season.
“We’re fairly athletic and work hard,” Dupo head coach Matt Carpenter said. “We improved greatly toward the end of last season and held our own on the defensive end, but we’ve got to play as hard as we can each and every game and use our athleticism to our advantage.”
Key returning players for the Tigers include Cameron Foster, Mackenzie Scheppelman, Mykenzie Kloess, Reagan Carner and Maddie Esmon. All are seniors except for Esmon, who is a sophomore.
Foster, Scheppelman and Esmon have all contributed to the scoring in the early going for the Tigers, who are off to a 1-3 start. Dupo’s win came at home against Valmeyer during the recent Cat Classic.
Dupo finished 3-21 last season.
Newcomers for the 2018-19 campaign include freshmen Alexis Curtis and Octavia Heidelberg. In fact, Heidelberg, a 5-foot-9 forward, already leads Dupo in scoring at nearly 11 points per game.
Carpenter hopes his team can continue to learn the game and improve as the season wears on.
“We’ve got five returning girls who know what I expect and can be positive leaders on the floor,” he said. “The freshmen will have to learn on the job as they get experience early in the season and I’ll expect more (from them) as the season passes.”
The key to success for the Tigers will be putting in the work on both sides of the ball night in and night out.
“We have to work harder on offense and defense because we don’t have that one go-to player to score,” Carpenter said. “We’ve got a decent nucleus in the upperclassmen, but don’t have any experience coming off of the bench.”
Key conference opponents in the Kaskaskia Division of the Cahokia Conference this season include Red Bud, New Athens, Marissa and Lebanon.
The Tigers host Lebanon on Dec. 3.