Brainerd Girls Basketball Looking For Success With 1-3-1 Defense And Fast-Paced Offense
The Brainerd girls basketball team is a group made up of a strong core of seniors and several promising underclassmen that already have gained valuable experience on the court. The Warriors hope that a stingy 1-3-1 defense and an up-tempo offense will lead them to a conference title and deep playoff run this season.
With six underclassmen on the Brainerd girls basketball team, the Warriors are young, and while the seniors will be leading the team, it’s the underclassmen who have a good amount of experience.
“Our young players, most of them played major minutes for us last year, so we have a lot of experience,” said Brainerd girls basketball head coach Troy Nelson.
“We only have one new person and the rest are returning varsity, so we kind of know how everything is working,” said Brainerd girls basketball senior center Jewel Aho.
Last year, the Warriors started implementing a unique defense to help them compete against top tier competition.
“1-3-1 we went to last year and we really went to it because that’s how we’re going to be able to beat the best teams that we play,” said Nelson.
“A lot of teams don’t play it, [1-3-1] who we are playing against, so it’s kind of confusing for a lot of them; if we hustle we can really get a lot of stops on defense, so that’s why I like it,” said Brainerd girls basketball senior forward Grace Zimmerman.
On the offensive side of the ball, the Warriors are looking to create easy buckets by getting out in transition.
“A lot of other teams have really big posts, so when we have mismatches like that, we just get up the floor,” said Zimmerman.
“We do try and push it, but if we don’t have a good look, we try and pull it out, we try to work as a team, we try to drive and kick,” said Brainerd girls basketball senior forward Autumn Miles.
Shooting the ball is another one of the Warriors’ strengths.
“The more easy baskets we can get, the more our confidence will rise and when our confidence is high, we tend to shoot the ball quite a bit better,” said Nelson.
By the end of the season, a top spot in the Central Lakes Conference is where Brainerd hopes to be.
“I would like to be at the top of our conference and also beat either Wilmar or Alexandria this year,” said Zimmerman.