Huskies start new season 2-1 |

Huskies start new season 2-1

Chris Freud
Shane Macomber/Vail DailyBattle Mountain's starting power forward Meagan Reigel hits a short jumpshot during practice Tuesday.

EAGLE-VAIL – It’s the holidays, so here’s a Christmas joke.There’s the pessimistic kid and the optimist. Both come down from their rooms on Christmas morning.The pessimistic kid has the most beautiful tree ever. Underneath is an iPod, a state-of the-art-cell phone, a DVD player and big plasma TV. The kid cries. It isn’t enough.The optimistic kid comes down the stairs. There are no gifts, no tree, just a pile of manure. The kid smiles and starts to shovel away.Why is the kid happy? He says, “There’s got to be a pony underneath it.”That kid describes Battle Mountain girls basketball coach David Hite to a tee.

Now in his fourth year with the program, he and his teams have endured plenty of lows, but this year could well be the year that justifies the optimism Hite has exuded since he started with the Huskies.Battle Mountain has already started the season with a 2-1 mark at the Summit Holiday Classic, including routs of Clear Creek (65-27) and Middle Park (55-23) with only an overtime loss to Manitou Springs (40-38) as a blemish.”It’s a solid group of girls,” Hite said. “Lexi (Guinn), Katie (Hite) and Megan (Reigel) have been with me for going on four years. Basically, you’re not having to reteach everything. You’re basically perfecting what you taught them already. We’re able to run some new drills and new plays this year.”Balance on both sides of the ballThat much was evident at last weekend’s tournament. It’s hard to remember the last time the Huskies put up 65 or 55 points in a game for that matter. Against Clear Creek, Lauren Prewitt had 23, while Reigel had 14.

In the finale versus Middle Park, Reigel put up 15, Kaeli Hosler had 12 and Guinn had 11.”I’m pretty excited. We’ve been working well together,” Guinn said. “We deserved to get two wins because we’ve been working very hard. We’re starting off strong. We all have been going to the boards. We have some pretty good outside shooters and we have really strong posts. It’s balance.”It’s also defense. The Huskies held Middle Park to 23 points and allowed just one bucket in the fourth quarter against the Panthers.”Our defense is going to win a lot of =games this year, said David Hite, who is coaching the team with assistant Clyde Hanks. “If you hold a team to 23 points and they score only two points in the fourth quarter, that’s a pretty solid defensive effort. We’re really working on our defense.”Guinn and Hosler will be in the backcourt. Prewitt is the center with Katie Hite and Reigel at forward. Off the bench, look for Jessie Jacobson, Max Van Dyke, Kelsey Sanders and Emily LyBarger.”I have some height this year,” David Hite said. “We don’t have a lot of depth this year. We don’t have a lot of subs, which I think is going to be to our advantage. If we stay out of foul trouble and the girls get good playing minutes, I think that will help us.”

Coming upThe Huskies are at Aspen Tuesday before heading to Rifle for the Western Slope preseason tournament next weekend. There, the Huskies will get to see the entire league in action.”We’re going to get a preseason look at everybody before you actually start your season,” Hite said. “You don’t have a district tournament anymore. You better be prepared when you get there. What we’re telling the girls this year is that every game counts because of the way bracketing goes for state. The first thing they look at is your record. We’re going to have to have more than five wins to go to state.”Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at (970) 949-0555, ext. 614 or Colorado

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