DORA — The Dora Lady Coyotes will build around three experienced seniors this season.
The team graduated two seniors and two other girls moved, but coach Myra Skinner is looking for improvement after the Lady Coyotes went 7-18 (4-6 District 3-1A) last season.
“We’ve got some seniors who have a lot of playing time together,” said Skinner, who was Bill Stockton’s assistant the past four years. “They’ve been playing together since ‘Little Dribblers.’”
The Lady Coyotes begin their 2004-05 schedule tonight with a game at House.
Returning starters are 5-8 senior point guard D’Shawn Pettigrew, 5-5 senior guard Jena Bilberry and 5-9 senior forward Kassandra Clark. Two juniors, 5-10 forward Rana Terry and 5-5 guard Jennifer Bolin, also lettered last year.
“We’re going to be one of the smaller teams in the district, but we’re pretty scrappy and we’ve got some speed and quickness,” Skinner said. “We’ll have to rely on that to win ballgames.”
Outside shooting may also help the Lady Coyotes. “D’Shawn, Jena and Kassandra can all shoot the 3-pointer,” Skinner said.
Dora hopes to add depth with 5-5 freshman guard Julissa Melendez and 5-7 sophomore guard-forward Yesenia Jacquez, a transfer from Levelland, Texas. Skinner said Jacquez is not yet eligible, and the school is awaiting a ruling from the NMAA to determine when she can play.
The Lady Coyotes know they’re in a challenging district, led by Fort Sumner and Elida.
“Fort Sumner is obviously going to be the favorite,” she said. “Elida lost a couple of girls to graduation, but Dan (Howard, Lady Tigers coach) has a good program. And Melrose has a new coach (Jason Lee) and they have some good athletes.
“If you don’t show up and play ball against anyone in this district, you’re going to get beat.”