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FHS senior trio look to shine

Time to shine for the “Big Three” seniors in Lady Admirals dark blue.

Picked No. 2 among Knoxville metro area girls basketball teams by one publicataion, Farragut returns four experienced, veteran starters for the 2010-11 season.

Size, or the lack of it, is a major drawback for a core of Lady Ads leading Farragut to a runner-up District 4-AAA finish last season.

Hayley Newby, senior All-District honoree, “is the cog that drives us … the heart of the team,” FHS head coach Wes Edmonds said of the team’s leading scorer and top rebounder last season who has started since her freshman season.

“In my mind, she’s one of the best players around,” he added. “She’s not the tallest [5-foot-11], she’s not the biggest, she’s not the fastest, but nobody works harder than she does. She’s not going to get backed down by anybody.”

About the starting five, Newby said, “We’re extremely close, all of the starters that we have right now, including Whitney [Smith] even though she came in as a freshman [now sophomore point].

“We have good team chemistry, so I think that’s really going to work in our favor this season.”

Newby said one challenge involves “not being the tallest team in the district. But we’ve been working incredibly hard in the preseason on conditioning, getting stronger with weights. So I think that’s something that we can overcome.”

Senior guard Katie Cargo, the team’s second leading scorer last year and a two-year starter, “last year really stepped up and became a scorer and a player for us,” Edmonds said. “She plays the game kinda like a guy. Real athletic, flashes to the basket. Has a really nice three-point shot.”

Cargo, also back-up point guard, said, “We’re actually ranked really high this year [in Knox metro area], so we have a lot to live up to.

“It was a lot easier last year to be the underdog in most games,” Cargo added. “It's going to be harder, being high-ranked knowing we have to live up to how great everybody thinks that we might be. But I think we'll live up to it. We're ready.

“We want it really bad.”

Versatile small forward/guard Jessica Griswold (5-foot-10) “is a good shooter, and she can rebound,” Edmonds said, adding that Griswold can step up when teams attempt to take away Newby and Cargo.

Junior post Anna Brinson “has come on really strong the last couple of years,” Edmonds said. “She has a lot of [shooting] range, can stretch the defense a little bit. Under-sized for a post [5-foot-10], but can really take people off the dribble. And a great rebounder.”

Sophomore point guard Smith “really didn't play like a freshman [last season],” Edmonds said. “Her composure, and the way she handled herself; she didn't have the attitude of a freshman. A tenacious, hard-nosed player. Pushes herself real hard.”

Soph-omore reserve post Katie Overton (6-foot) “has had a really great summer for us,” Edmonds said. “Has just a really good skill set. Uses both hands around the basket. … Gives us size off the bench.”

Reserve guard/wing Madison Blevins, a sophomore, “is really athletic,” Edmonds said. “Can really get to the basket … and do some rebounding for us.”

Junior wing Courtney Ingram “is one of our better, in practice, three-point shooters,” said Edmonds, beginning his third season as FHS head coach.

Though concerned about histeam’s lack of overall post/forward size, Edmonds said the Lady Ads are “an aggressive defensive team, that's really something we pride ourselves on. We're a very defensive-oriented team.”

Other Farragut girls looking to contribute are junior wings Caylee Carter and Sierra Scott and freshman point/wing Rebecca Jameson.

Assistant coaches are Rachel Bast and Beth Raby Underwood.


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