The Pleasant Ridge girls’ basketball team had a record season in 2018-19.
The Rams finished the year with one of the school’s all-time best records at 19-3 and the first Northeast Kansas League title for the school since the league was formed.
Head coach Mike Koontz said it was a great season with the team accomplishing big goals. He said the team wished they would have been able to keep playing but they came up a little short.
The Rams’ season ended in a 45-43 loss to Marysville in the sub-state semifinals.
Koontz said the biggest strength of the team was their chemistry.
“I think the chemistry we had as a team was the biggest strength,” Koontz said. “It was amazing to listen to the girls encourage each other and play for each other night in and night out.”
He also said the entire season will be his favorite memory.
“It was amazing to watch this team work together and compete together,” Koontz said. “I wish the season could have continued.”
The only thing that Koontz said he would have changed was being able to play further.
He also said it was really hard to pick the best game the team played. He pointed out both Jackson Heights games. The girls kept fighting – even when down by double digits – to win both games.
He also talked about beating Jefferson County North in overtime to win the league outright.
“We converted a layup with 2.7 seconds left on the clock for the win,” he said. “They will always be memorable games and ones we showed who we were as a team.”
Koontz said the MVP would be split between seniors Julie Miller and Lindsey Heim. Those two along with Madison Ewert leave behind a legacy for the program. Koontz said the seniors showed the younger girls how to work to make themselves better during the season and offseason.
Looking ahead to next season, Koontz said the Rams will have two returning starters. He also expects Gabbi Watkins to push hard for a starting job. He said the team will need some girls to work in the offseason to make the team better.
“We are looking for some other girls to put in big efforts this summer to push for the other starting positions,” Koontz said. “We could be pretty good next year as well. It is going to take a lot of work from those other girls to make it happen.”