It's a brand new season for the girls basketball team at Hartford Union High School. The Orioles host Wisconsin Lutheran Friday night, November 17 in the first game of the year.
Vinny Daniels begins his fourth season as head coach, and told WTKM Sports that he's excited to start.
"We are extremely young, we return six kids from last year that were in our main rotation. It includes five sohomores now and one junior. We have one senior on our roster."
Hartford has won 47 games the last three seasons.
It was an impressive season last year, in which they finished 18-8, including a 13-5 mark in the North Shore Conference - good enough for third place. They averaged 69.8 points per game, with a lot of talented players returning. Three talented girls from last year's team graduated, including Alayna Pusch, Kacy Kratz and Brooke Voss.
"I think we can push our points per game average from last season, we have a ton of offensive talent this year, but with that our rotation is filled with juniors, sophomores and freshmen. We're excited, but I think there will be some growing pains early in the season with players that have never played high school basketball before. I think people have taken note that the talent level in our program continues to rise."
The preseason rankings have the Orioles eighth in the state in Division I, but Coach Daniels believes they have to earn it.
"We haven't been ranked in a long time and we haven't won a game yet, so I feel like we have to earn that ranking. I feel like we can compete for a conference championship, I'm not going to flat out say that we are going to win conference, but I believe we are in the conversation. Homestead is at the top of our conference, and has a group of juniors that is 35-1 in conference play the last two seasons."
Kenzie Fink is the only senior on the team, while Makena Christian returns for her junior season, after becoming the career scoring leader in only her second year of varsity basketball at Hartford Union High School. Sophomore Bella Klages averaged 11 points per game last season, and will be counted on this year.
The Orioles are ready for another exciting season.