If you go …
What: Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team in the Uintah Classic Tournament
When: 3:30 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. and 5:45 p.m. Saturday
Where: Uintah High School, 1880 W. 500 North, in Vernal, Utah
“We were really strong and ran the floor really well. We are still running a new offense, so there are some things that need help, but the girls are doing better with it.”
— Matt Ray, the Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball head coach, on how his team is handling the new offense
The Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team will open the season Friday and Saturday in the Uintah Classic Tournament in Vernal, Utah.
But, before games officially count, the Bulldogs had a preseason primer over the holiday weekend as they scrimmaged Friday at Rifle High School and Saturday at Hayden High School.
Head coach Matt Ray said there were times when his team played well and other times they made mistakes.
“We started the Rifle game slow and not ready, but once we got going we did some good things,” he said. “Against Hayden, we moved the ball well, but again, the game showed things we can work on.
“When you go against each other, it is hard to find your weaknesses. Going against someone different who doesn’t know what we are going to do is going to show us where we can improve.”
Each scrimmage consisted of three, 20-minute periods. Scores were not released from the scrimmages.
With the 2011-12 season being the first full year running Ray’s new offense, the head coach said he was happy to get time to run it against an opponent before the season begins.
“We were really strong and ran the floor really well,” he said. “We are still running a new offense, so there are some things that need help, but the girls are doing better with it.”
Before the Uintah Classic, Ray said he wants the girls to focus on starting games out strong.
“We came out really slow and sluggish in both scrimmages,” he said. “It was a glaring thing I noticed and we just need to start strong from the jump ball forward.”
The Bulldogs have two seniors this season — Melissa Camilletti and Annie Sadvar.
Ray said the underclassmen made strides during the scrimmages and should be ready for the team’s first game Friday against Union High School to open the tournament.
“The Uintah tournament always has great competition and it is a great way to start the season,” he said. “Union is big and physical while Wasatch has a great press team and Uintah is really strong. They are three great teams to get our season started against.”
To avoid first-game nerves, Ray said he is going to continue to put his team through tough practices and get them into a routine.
But, if the Bulldogs want to end the weekend with a 3-0 record, they are going to have to play their style of game, Ray said.
“We are going to have to rebound to control the boards and not make big mistakes,” he said. “The style of offense we run, we are going to have a couple of turnovers, but we need to limit them and control the tempo.
“If we can be patient and get the shot we want, I think we can leave with three wins.”
MCHS boys basketball ready to hit the court
While the girls basketball team opens the season this weekend, the boys varsity team doesn’t get rolling until Dec. 8 in the Steamboat Springs Shootout.
To give his team some real-time situations, head coach Eric Hamilton has his team scrimmaging Rifle today and Hayden on Friday.
“It is the preseason, so we want to get the jitters out of the way,” he said. “We play ourselves in practice every day, so playing another team will let us know what to work on and what we are able to execute well.”
The Bulldogs play at 4 p.m. in Rifle and 4:15 p.m. in Hayden.
Hamilton said another benefit of scrimmages is to get his players on the court and see who can benefit the team in the regular season.
“We have about nine guys picked out for varsity and still have a few spots open,” he said. “There is a big difference between practice and games, so we want to put the guys out there and see how they can help us in our rotation.”
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