Thursday, August 21, 2014
   
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Girls basketball team returns ‘green’ players

Swede players will develop through season.

In his 22 years of coaching girls basketball, Tim Peterson can’t remember a time he didn’t have at least one veteran player who had her position pretty well wrapped up from the first day of practice.

“Each year coaches tell the kids that everyone has to earn their spot,” Peterson said, “even though one or two might already have a strong hold. This year, there really are no clear-cut positions. The girls are very green.”

Even though the Swedes return seven seniors and 12 letter winners, only a couple of them have significant varsity experience.

The rest played limited minutes last season when the Gothenburg girls finished 9-12.

“This is going to be a year where we take things gradually,” Peterson said. “We’ll have to build on every game and every practice. Eventually, the cream will rise to the top.”

So with every position up for grabs, the Swedes embark on another year with a difficult schedule.

“It’s really tough all the way through, “Peterson said. “We’re either going to get better or we’re going to back down and I don’t see these kids backing down.”

The Swedes open with Hershey at home on Friday and follow on the road at Lexington Saturday.

“And it doesn’t get any easier from there,” Peterson said.

The Southwest Conference is going to be full of solid competition.

Peterson expects Minden to finish at the top with an athletic Valentine team, experienced Ogallala team and much improved Cozad to follow.

In the C1-11 sub-district, Peterson’s early predictions put Southern Valley and Hershey at the top.

“Regardless of who we play, we’re going to put a product on the floor that can compete with anyone,” Peterson said. “These girls are competitors and they’re

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