Woodlands Academy girls basketball preview

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Coach Chris Ohlwein

Ohlwein is one of the area’s hardest-working coaches on game day. First, she coaches the junior varsity game; then, she quickly turns her attention to leading the varsity girls.

“Regardless of what happens in the junior varsity game, you have to shift focus and get ready right away for the varsity game,” she said. “You have to do what’s best for the next group of girls.”

With no players taller than 5-foot-8, Ohlwein said every player on the team will have to rebound.

Point guard Abby Kendall

Kendall is a four-year starter at point guard and she will set the tone for the Wildcats on offense and defense.

“She’ll take over the leadership role and be the driving force out there,” Ohlwein said. “When we need a basket, we’ll look to her.”

Kendall worked diligently in the offseason to prepare for an even more enhanced role.

“I focused on my shot, [scoring] off the dribble, ball-handling and conditioning,” she said. “This team will grow and learn a lot as the season goes on.”

Forward Jackie Gonzalez

Last year, Gonzalez floated between the junior varsity and varsity. This season, she’ll be asked to guard a top offensive threat and protect the glass against taller players.

“She knows how to get position and is very strong,” Ohlwein said.

Added Kendall: “Jackie is a very aggressive player and she’s worked hard to improve her game.”

Ohlwein noted that Gonzalez has also improved her ball-handling skills.

2012-13 record: 6-14

Head coach: Chris Ohlwein, eighth season

Projected starting five: sr. G Abby Kendall, so. G Jocelyn Gonzalez, so. F Jackie Gonzalez, so. G Kassie De Santiago, sr. F Janay Allen.

Game to watch: Francis Parker at Woodlands Academy, 5:30 p.m. Dec. 3. This will be the first conference game of the season for the Wildcats.

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