Lady Braves basketball opens season with Paoli tonight

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With just one senior on the roster, coach Brandon Allman will be working with a young girls basketball team at Brownstown Central this winter.

“With Kelsey (Schneider) being our lone senior and Jenna Klosterman, a junior, they are the two girls that have a lot of varsity experience for us,” he said. “The rest of the girls may have some minutes, like Sophie Wischmeier, who played some big minutes in the tournament. A lot of them just don’t have a lot of quality varsity minutes.”

Allman just got a decent amount of his roster from the volleyball team, which just finished its season last weekend.

“We’re going to be young. We’re going to learn by fire, so to speak,” he said. “With our volleyball girls having so much success, we’re just going to get five practices in with the full team.”

The Braves will open tonight at home against Paoli. The junior varsity game will start at 6 p.m.

Klosterman scored 136 points in 25 games last winter for an average of 5.4, and Schneider averaged 3.1 points per game.

“We’re going to look for those two to lead us vocally more than anything,” Allman said.

Wischmeier will be counted on for inside scoring, rebounding and defense. Other juniors on the roster are Mallory Klosterman, Jenna’s twin sister, Addison Darlage, Kinzee Dean and Kassie Helton.

Darlage played in 25 games last season and scored 60 points. Wischmeier, Dean and Darlage were on the volleyball team.

“I’m hoping Mallory will have an impact on us this year,” Allman said. “She missed most of last year due to injury and missed a lot this summer. She’s been playing well at the start of practice. Addison and Kinzee will have a chance to be impactful for us. We have a few sophomores that I think could have an impact.”

Allman likes the size of his front line.

“We do have a little bit of length and some size, and hopefully, we’ll be able to score inside more than what we have in the past,” he said.

Besides Wischmeier at 5-9, Haley Hobson is 5-10 and freshman Claire Brock is 5-11.

“Our offense is going to be a lot of screening, a lot of cutting, trying to get the basketball inside, and if they do double inside, being able to kick it back out and hit some shots from outside (will be important),” Allman said. “We definitely want to play from the inside out this year. I think we have about nine points returning from last year. One of my biggest concerns is where some of our scoring is going to come from.”

He is counting on strong defense.

“I’m hoping we can turn some teams over a little bit and get some scoring that way, as well,” he said. “I think we’re going to switch up a lot. I think we’ll play a multitude of defenses and see how the flow goes in the game and what’s working. We’ll definitely have to be able to pressure some teams and get after teams and try to create some offense for us. I’ve always been more of a zone pressing team. With our personnel, it will be more of a zone trapping defense.”

Allman said all coaches are going to have to learn about changes the IHSAA has made.

“With all the new rules and getting accustomed to that and seeing how coaching philosophies are going to change with the resetting of the fouls every quarter (is new),” he said. “I do think that allows us to be more aggressive when they reset the fouls every quarter and not worrying about getting in the bonus early on.

“First and foremost, we want to be known on the defensive end, and we have the past few years. That’s going to be our strength,” he said. “We’re going to have to rely on that a lot. When you come and watch us, you’re going to see girls play hard, get after it and do things the right way. That’s what our foundation is based on.”

Allman said he looks for Scottsburg, Silver Creek and Corydon Central to be at the top of the Mid-Southern Conference.

Brownstown rescheduled its first two games. The Corydon game is scheduled for Dec. 12, and the New Albany game will be played Jan. 8.

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