COLFAX — With their top three scorers from last season all gone through graduation, the Colfax girls basketball team will look for some different players to fill that void this season.
Gone are Mallie Doucette, the leading scorer in the conference as well as for the team with a 14 point average, Braanna Steen, third in conference scoring and second for the Vikings at 12 points a game and Taylor Shipman, third on the team in scoring average at just over six points a game. All three were also in the top four on the team in rebounds and assists. Also gone are three key players who came off the bench including Jess Moonen, Emily Halpin and Katlin Sauerwein. Doucette is now a member of the Minnesota-Moorhead basketball team while Steen plays for the University of Dubuque-Iowa.
Coach Joe Doucette begins his 25th year leading the Vikings who were 16-0 in conference last year, and 22-0 before losing a regional final game to Mondovi, a team they had beaten twice during the regular season. Two seniors with plenty of varsity experience hope to lead the team to another conference title including three year point guard Dannielle Dachel and three year guard/forward Alexis Rudi. Other seniors who should help out after seeing some varsity playing time are Chey Olson, Katie Christoffel and Karina Wait along with junior Dempsey Fogarty.
Hoping to earn a spot on varsity are senior Marissa Prince, junior Andrea Brantner and sophomores Makenzi White-Quilling, Ally Heidorn and Megan Schleusner. Five freshmen complete the roster including Makayla Mattson, Becca Lee, Mackenzie Jensen, Hailey Durand-Christianson and Mikaela Leifreied.
Doucette’s goals are pretty simple this season.
“We hope if we work hard and develop team work we can be in a hunt for a conference title,” he said. “We want to continue to improve as the season goes on and represent our school and community in a classy way.”
Based on teams who have the most experienced players coming back, Doucette believes Elk Mound will be the favorite in the conference this year.
John Dachel will serve as the assistant coach for his second year as the team begins their season with a conference game at St. Croix Central Tuesday, Nov. 18 then plays at home Friday, Nov. 21 against Spring Valley.
NOTE: Other former Colfax players to keep an eye on at the college level this year are senior Sam Doucette at St. Scholastica in Duluth, senior Jenni Gust at Lenoir Rhyne, NC, (a pre-season All Conference pick), junior Sam Yolitz at Carroll College in Milwaukee and Ryleigh Prochnow is on the roster at UW- LaCrosse.