NORTON — Girl’s basketball is serious business in our corner of Southwest Virginia. Since the local school consolidations, the 2A state championship has not left the area as the Lady Warriors won in 2014 and ’15 and three-peated in ’17, ’18 and ’19. And in 2016 when they didn’t win? Ridgeview defeated Union for the championship.
The teams finish up at the end of February or beginning of March and usually take off a month or so before it is right back to the roundball grind or playing other spring sports. It’s no surprise that camps start at the beginning of June and go right through the summer.
One of the biggest camps around is the SWVA team camp. This year, 31 varsity and junior varsity team met up at five different local schools to scrimmage.
Everyone is looking at the superchampion, Lady Warriors. When interviewed at the beginning of the 2018-2019 season, VHSL Hall of Fame head coach Robin Dotson agreed that on paper, they are the team to beat until someone is actually able to usurp the throne.
On Wednesday, Central took on both Sullivan East and Thomas Walker in successive games.
After graduating Olivia Mullins, Brittany Mullins, Dee Cvetnich and VHSL 2A player of the year, Brook Porter, the Lady Warriors have some obvious holes to fill.
Upcoming senior Hannah Carter is the only returning starter for the team. Her size lends itself to strong defense and a powerful jump shot she will need to continue to nail if the Lady Warriors want to come back with another championship.
Central was also missing post play as Callie Mullins is still healing from an injury
The Lady Warriors saw Jill Sturgill, Hannah McAmis and Hannah Large shouldering the majority of the ball handling. Gabby Hall and Isabella Sturgill are also coming into their own on both sides of the ball.
Coach Dotson has brought up several new players from junior varsity that look to have a lot to contribute.