Teams warm up for winter season

Fall is coming to an end, meaning that volleyball, soccer and football are as well.

With the end of fall, comes winter, and Linfield sports that will be starting this season are men’s and women’s basketball, as well as the men’s and women’s swim teams.

Both basketball teams will kick off their seasons this week, with the men playing Nov. 15 and the women playing Nov. 18.

The men’s basketball team looks forward to the upcoming season despite graduating five seniors last year.

The team has welcomed one new freshman to the team, as well as bringing up three other players from junior varsity.

The team has eight returning players.

“We have a very talented group of freshmen,” coach Larry Doty said. “Andrew Batiuk will see significant playing time on the varsity at the post position. At 6’9,” he is the second tallest front line player.”

Doty highlighted Batiuk’s raw talent.

“He is a talented player who can play from the 3-point line as well as with his back to the basket,” Doty said.  “Two of our post players are injured currently and will not be in the line-up until sometime in December, giving Andrew significant playing time at the post.”

The team’s goal is to make it to the Northwest Conference playoffs, meaning the team must finish in the top four teams.

The women’s basketball team also has high hopes for the upcoming season.  The team welcomes back seven all-star players returning to the team, as well as 10 new freshmen.

“[The new players] will all add great excitement in the program,” said coach Robin Potera-Haskins.

Potera-Haskins also said that each returning player has made an impact on the team.

“Senior Gretchen Owens led the conference in scoring last year and we are striving for the same this season,” Potera-Haskins said. “Brynna Fuller, also a senior, will lead the team at the point guard position and is a good outside shooter. Sophomore Kaely Maltman started as a freshman last year and  will have a hugh impact on the team with her scoring ability and aggressiveness. Junior Nicole Barton is a very versatile player who will add great depth.”

With a strong team, Potera-Haskins believes that they will be a
contender for the Northwest Conference.

“We look forward to building a strong competitive D3 program”, Potera-Haskins said.

As both basketball teams start up this week, the swim teams have been hard at work in competition for the last three weeks.

With a combination of new and old swimmers competing this season, the team has hopes to build a strong program that can go head to head with the other large teams in the conference.

The men’s team has doubled in size since last season with 19 swimmers, while the women’s team has 24 swimmers.

“We have significantly grown as a team this season and it is great to see us stand up next to the other large teams,” junior captain Rhiannon Ladwig said.

The swim teams’ next six meets will be at home.

While each winter sport gears up for a strong season, the teams all have geared up  for a good season.

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