In 2020, the Hallsville girls basketball program continued its resurgence into one of the more competitive small schools in middle Missouri. The Lady Indians finished with 17-7 record—those 17 wins were the most in a season since 2014–15—and claimed the first annual Harrisburg Tournament Championship. Their campaign came to a close with a tight 41-37 defeat to Macon in the district finals.

This year, the team will have to replace three key seniors who supplied 22 combined points per game and led the way on the defensive side of the floor. Head Coach Matt Heet says, “We may not replace all that scoring with three people, but we have enough depth to get that scoring back this season.”

Without a doubt, Heet will look to senior G Avery Oetting (5'5) to lead the way. Oetting led the team in points, steals, and 3-point percentage last year. She is an All-Conference, All-District, and KRES All-Star selection, and enters her fourth year starting. Another returning starter is another four-year player, senior F Rachel Hargis (5'7). Heet calls Hargis a “truly great competitor.” Look for increased scoring from her in the year ahead.

Those two make a nice foundation for a starting five that will also include senior G Chloe Quintana (5-4), senior F Ashlyn Hough (5-10), and junior G Kristen Jones (5-5). Quintana is a relentless competitor who will be looked to for outside shooting, Hough is an excellent defender in the post, and Jones can score from deep or get to the rim. Backcourt depth arrives in the form of junior Gs Madysen Lucas (5-4), Peyton Thoenen (5-4), and Kaylee Edie (5-3), with Lucas likely having the highest ceiling of all three. Down in the post, expect senior F Natalie Mitchell (5-9) and junior F Madison Threlkeld (5-11) to get some quality minutes. 

As usual, Hallsville will be one of the harder-nosed, hardest-pressing teams around this winter. And with a bevy of solid offensive players, they could make some noise in the Tri-County and beyond. “There are many great opportunities for this team that they are capable of accomplishing,” Heet says. “They have the potential to be fighting for a conference and district championship. We have a great deal of experience at the varsity level and hopefully we can use that to an advantage in close ball games.”

Expect them to do just that and be right in the mix for some titles at the end of the season.

 

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