By: Tess Letendre—School News Editor
To tip off the 2022-2023 season, the Sharon Girls Basketball program welcomes 3 new coaches for the Freshman, Junior Varsity, and Varsity teams. As these new coaches join the program, the team desires a fresh, strong start to their season. After only losing one graduated senior from the previous season, the team is made up of a lot of underclassmen who have a bit of prior court time together. The captains for the 2022-2023 season are Junior Eva Poulton and Senior Tess Letendre.
The girls started up with a slow start and are now 2-4, securing 2 big wins against Milford and Silver Lake. Moving forward, the team hopes to reign in more wins, and enough to advance them to the playoffs. “I’m hoping to win more games and make the state tournament, both of which are very achievable goals,” says Junior 3-year varsity player Rachael Hagar.
Coming off from a rocky season in the past, the team desires to advance forward as a team, and a program. “This year is a fresh start for everybody and I think that we are trying not to let the past affect this season in terms of everything,” says Junior Captain Eva Poulton.
The hope for this season is to unite all the individual teams while also bringing together the program as a whole. “We’re hoping to change the culture of the program and give it more of a family feel. Make the identity one program vs. 3 separate teams within one program,” says new varsity coach and program director Matthew DellaBarba.
The change in the entire program’s coaching staff has altered the teams mindset for the season, and provided hope for change. “Even before the season started, I knew that I was excited and so were the returning players in the program. I think the idea of new coaches and staff made everybody excited to get to work and show their pride in the program,” adds Poulton.
While focusing on bringing together the program, another obvious goal is to strengthen basketball skills to achieve their goal of making the tournament. “I hoped bringing in the new coaches would offer a chance for me and everyone else to learn from them and grow our skills as we progress through our high school careers,” says Poulton
“I’ve lived in the area my whole life and Sharon has always been considered a basketball town . As recently as 2014 Sharon had one of the best girls basketball programs in the state and my goal is to lead the program back to that level.” adds DellaBarba.
The team has prior experience together, and only lost one senior last year so will have future years together as well. “I think as a team we picked up right where we left off from last year and our chemistry has only grown since the loss of that senior. This year is a fresh start for everybody and I think that we are trying not to let the past affect this season in terms of everything,” says Poulton
“I’m more concerned with who’s here this year and who wants to change the culture and grow the program. I think the returning Varsity players playing together previously helps with familiarity but we are running completely different plays and concepts than previous years.” adds DellaBarba.
Since the season is well on its way, the girls have already been able to notice a change in their basketball atmosphere. “Further into the season now, the changes have created a positive environment for everyone. We take pride in our teammates and ourselves and continue to push each other to get better. The changes that I had hoped to see have already happened, so I’m excited to see what happens next!” says Poulton.
“The overall team morale and mentality has greatly improved because the coaches strongly push the idea of being a united team,” says Hagar.