Prep basketball: Bear River girls open league season against Center |

Prep basketball: Bear River girls open league season against Center

Know & Go

What: Bear River vs. Center

When: 7 p.m., Friday

Where: Jack R. McCrory Gymnasium, Bear River High School

The 2014-15 basketball season got off to a rocky start for the Bear River girls basketball team, but the Lady Bruins seem to have found their stride just in time for league play.

After dropping their first five games and six of their first seven, the Lady Bruins have rattled off four straight wins leading up to their Pioneer Valley League opener tonight against Center.

“Were starting to play a little bit better,” said Bear River head coach Jeff Bickmore. “We have a pretty inexperienced team, but they are coming along and learning to play together. I’ve been happy with the progress.”

Bear River (5-6) boasts a young team with just two seniors and five juniors on the 11-girl roster. Senior Michelle Whiting has been the scoring leader for Bear River, notching 20 or more points several times throughout the non-league season.

“She’s been shooting the ball really well and picked it up for us offensively,” said Bickmore.

The Lady Bruins have a fluid starting five with Whiting, Savannah Wirth, Taylor Autery, Ashley Albee, Kaitlyn Solomon, Nerissa Long and Karinne McDonald getting the bulk of the minutes.

McDonald, a freshmen, is the tallest Lady Bruin at 5-foot, 11-inches.

“She’s been put in a tough situation for a freshman but we needed her,” said Bickmore. “We don’t have a lot of size. Its been real important for her to step up and she’s down a good job overall.”

Last season Bear River went 23-5 overall, won the PVL title handily and reached the Sac-Joaquin Section D-IV semifinals before losing to eventual section champ Bradshaw Christian.

But the Lady Bruins graduated all their starters from a season ago as Lauren Runte, Maddi Dunn, Teryn Rath, Jen Alberts and Kaitlyn Reina have all moved on.

The Lady Bruins quest to defend their PVL title starts at 7 p.m. today against Center at Jack R. McCrory Gymnasium.

To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email

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