Port girls already show improvement

It takes Pirates only two basketball games to win their first after one victory all of last year
By 
MITCH MAERSCH
Ozaukee Press staff

Last year, it took until Feb. 5 when they had just a handful of games left in their season for the Port Washington High School girls’ basketball team to earn its first victory.

This year, the Pirates notched a mark in the win column in their second game.

Port beat Cudahy, 58-53, on the road last Friday to even its record at 1-1.

“It just builds confidence for our players. They work their butts off,” coach Jakob Wahl said.

Cudahy was up five with a few minutes left when the Pirates went on a run. Abby Fritsch hit a three-pointer to put Port ahead, and the defense tightened the screws.

Peyton Mueller-Stenz led Port with 15 points. Fritsch and Sophia Bostwick each had 10 and Kayla Johnson had nine.

“It was a pretty balanced effort all around. We need all of our players to contribute, whether it’s on the defensive side of the court or scoring,” Wahl said.

The Pirates held a lead throughout most of the game but Wahl said they couldn’t get past the five to six-point edge to put Cudahy away early.

The Pirates are young this season, he said, and are expected to drastically improve by the end of the year.

Junior Tiana Davis and seniors Kendra Dowe and Keelie Schumacher are the only returning players.

Mueller-Stenz, a sophomore, is 5 feet, 10 inches tall and can run well. Nobody is taller than 6 feet.

Johnson, another sophomore, is one of the few post players.

“From there, a lot of our parts are interchangeable,” Wahl said, adding sometimes four guards will be in the game and even maybe five.

Offensively, Port may be difficult to defend.

“I couldn’t tell you who our leading scorer is going to be on any given night,” Wahl said.

Defensively, the Pirates will primarily play man-to-man, mix in some zone later in the season.

Regardless of the kind of offense or defense Wahl runs, he said he has noticed something about this year’s team.

“We have a really good group of girls. They all really enjoy being around each other,” Wahl said. “They’re very eager to learn, and they want to play well.”

Wahl said he expects the North Shore Conference to be wide open. Last year’s top teams graduated several players. But Wahl said Slinger reloads every season, West Bend West returns star Maddy Baker and Homestead should be solid again.

The Pirates, he said, have established team goals of having a positive attitude and always playing with high energy and effort.

“It’s more of how we’re preparing and what we can control,” Wahl said.

Port, 1-1, was scheduled to host Hartford on Tuesday and West Bend East on Tuesday, Dec. 3.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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