Blazers return 10 players from last season

The Cumberland Valley Christian School varsity girls basketball team will look to build on last season’s success.

The 2018-2019 season saw the Lady Blazers finish with an overall record of 18-12, placing second in the regular season in the Mason-Dixon Christian Conference and fourth in the MDCC Tournament. The Lady Blazers had continued success at the National Christian Schools Athletic Association Tournament by placing second in the Fourth Division.

The Lady Blazers return 10 of 12 players from last season’s team. They will be led by MDCC all-conference and all-tournament player Kyleigh Teal, who will be looking to finish her senior season with her first MDCC title while chasing 1,000 career points.

Teal, however, won’t be the only key returning piece. Senior Jalen Moats, who was the Defensive Player of the Year for the Blazers last season, returns, looking to build upon a season in which she averaged five points and eight rebounds per game. Moats said, “Our focus has been coming together as team and focusing on coming together for a common cause, which is to win.”

Sophmores Mollee Stake, Laurel Reitz, Sarah Vandersleen and Amber Yanosik round out a strong returning lineup.

Reitz and Yanosik were both first-team MDCC all-conference as well as all-tournament team members. Yanosik averaged 13 points, five rebounds and four steals per game last season, while Reitz averaged 10 points, four assists, and four steals.

“Mollee Stake and Sarah Vandersleen have improved a tremendous amount  over the summer and are looking to build off freshman seasons in which they saw lots of playing time,” Blazers coach Dylan Ward said.

Stake and Reitz both are on a mission this season to get back to the MDCC Final Four weekend.

Stake said, “Last year we felt that we had a chance to win and some things didn’t go our way, and this season we want to get back and play for a championship.”

Reitz added, “We are going into the season with the concept of playing fast but mentally slowing the game down and making the right decisions.”

Seniors Mariah Peck and Marlee Stake will contribute in the shooting aspect, one area in which the Blazers are looking to improve. Junior Mackenzie Sites will bring depth to the front court and add a strong rebounding presence. Freshmen Emmalynn Hott and Marley Peck will add depth to the team.