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Green Sea-Floyds girls looking for return trip to Columbia

Green Sea—It was an outstanding year for the Green Sea-Floyds girls’ basketball team last winter.  The Trojans advanced to the Class A state title game before falling to Estill.

That loss has provided plenty of motivation to get back there again and finish the job in 2017-18.  Head coach Tracy Kienast has a veteran roster that opened the campaign with an 8-2 record at the start of the new year.

“Five of them played some good minutes for us last year.  They were really ready to get back to work this summer and push themselves to improve.  Even though we have a small group of players, seven of them are back from last year.  They pretty much remembered what we did so we’ve just kept adding on,” Kienast said.

The Trojans have a superstar on the perimeter in senior point guard Tamara Jackson, who has averaged 22.1 points, 4.9 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 4.0 steals per game.

“I still view her as the best player in 1A.  We can always fall back on her to take charge out there.  Everyone looks to her.  She sees things really well on the court, and may see it from a different angle than I do.  We talk quite a bit and she’s pretty good at picking what works,” Kienast said.

Junior shooting guard Jalinda Johnson has been a solid complementary piece to Jackson.  Johnson is filling the stat sheet as well, recording 14.1 points, 6.6 rebounds, 4.6 steals and 2.9 assists each night.

“She’s been more consistent.  She’s actually averaging fewer points per game, but her rebounds, steals and assists are up.  She’s doing more things for us this year.  When Tamara is not on the court, she has the opportunity to take over.  She’s growing and stepping up, and I’m hoping she’ll continue to improve as the season goes along,” Kienast said.

Other players in the starting lineup include junior guard Kyneisha Graham and sophomore forwards Keyonna Ridges and Breionna Gore.

Making an impact off the bench is junior Laura Black, who started some last season.  She is scoring just over six points while grabbing three steals.  Senior Octavia Lowman is another key reserve.

Also on the roster is sophomore Alyssa Slobodiak, senior Alelea McCall and eighth-grader Jyshea Pope.

Green Sea-Floyds will be challenged in region play, having to play East Clarendon twice.  The two teams split a pair of matchups last year, but the Trojans edged the Wolverines in overtime in the Lower State final.  The same scenario could end up happening again this winter.

“There are a few other teams to watch out for, but East Clarendon is really good.  They’ve got four starters back and their young guard is the real deal.  It’s going to be a battle to see who wins the region, and it wouldn’t surprise me if we face each other again at Lower State,” Kienast said.

While a lot is yet to be determined, Kienast hopes this is the start of a strong foundation that can carry Green Sea-Floyds girls’ basketball into a consistent contender.

“Not to say we’ll continue to make the state championship game, but we want to be one of the teams that everyone is watching for to either get there or get really close every year,” Kienast said.

© 2017 High School Sports Report

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