By Kevin Eickman
Going into last season, one of the goals for the Milford girls’ basketball team was to win a playoff game and make some noise in the State tournament. The Buccaneers accomplished part of that feat for the first time under the leadership of coach Leona White last year, defeating Delmarva Christian in their home playoff opener 66-29. Unfortunately for Milford they would run into eventual State title runner-up Sanford in the second round, who easily handled the Buccaneers in the second round.
One of the other goals for Milford was to claim the Henlopen South title, unfortunately for the Bucs, they fell short of the target, despite a 14-6 regular season record. After starting out with a 7-0 start in Division play, Milford was hit by the injury bug last season and a pair of late season losses to Woodbridge and Lake Forest sealed their fate.
“Winning the South is always a goal of ours, but there are some very tough teams in our division and last Season Woodbridge got the better of us,” White stated.
While every team has to deal with injuries, Milford was not a very deep team last season, something White believes Milford has corrected for the upcoming year. “We have a lot more girls in the pool this season and that has to help,” White said. “When you have only 6 or 7 players to choose from and then players start getting hurt, it makes things difficult.”
Milford lost a pair of key players to graduation following last season with Kala Fluitt and Jonae Boone both finishing their Buccaneer careers. Luckily for Milford, the cupboard this season is far from bare. Two players that White will be counting on are seniors are Brianna Cahall and Rajene Bowe, both of whom had strong seasons last year. “These players have continued to improve every season they have been with us. They have always been outstanding athletes and as they have become more experienced, they have both developed into leaders as well,” White stated.
While a natural athlete, Bowe tended to be a little over zealous when she first arrived on the basketball scene. White gives her a great deal of credit for coming as far as she has in her time at Milford. “She is not afraid to work, not afraid to get better. It is why she is one of the best athletes ever to come through this school,” commented White. “When you couple that type of talent with her work ethic, there is no doubt that you will see a special player develop.”
Some newcomers to varsity to keep an eye out for include sophomore Sierra McCrea, senior Tayeler Duffy, junior Kalaysia Reynolds and sophomore Vanesha Daniels. “These are newcomers to varsity that we are expecting to come in and contribute,” stated White. “We are excited about having a real solid group of players such as this to add to our team. We are really looking forward to getting the season started and seeing what we can do.”
Milford will open the season this Tues as they host Delmar at 6:15.
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