MAHOPAC, N.Y., - The Mahopac High School girls basketball team lost two important players to graduation, but the Indians return a pair of talented starters, and with a strong surrounding cast the team hopes to be headed for another playoff appearance.
Last year‘s team went 9–11 and won its first-round playoff game against Clarkstown North, before losing in the quarterfinals to Our Lady of Lourdes (Poughkeepsie).
The Indians lost All-Conference guard/forward Claire Felix and All-Conference forward Siohban Hynes to graduation.
Sixth-year head coach Chuck Scozzafava welcomes two returning starters in senior guards Zina McInerney (captain) and Katrina Klammer. Returning senior forward Natalie Scanlan will also serve as a captain. Sophomores Shannon Becker, a forward, and 6-foot center Caitlin O’Boyle are also back.
“We are looking for Zina, Katrina and Natalie to get the others involved,” Scozzafava said. “They will teach the others, and run the show. They’re leaders. I think Zina can give us 10 or 12 points a game, Katrina plays excellent defense, and can score. Natalie is a defender who plays well in the post and gets out on the break. Those three will pave the way.” Of Becker and O’Boyle, he said, “I’m expecting both to step up and get us eight or 10 points a game consistently.”
Scozzafava is hoping for good things from newcomers Mia Klammer, a sophomore guard, and Melanie DeMeo, a freshman guard.
“Mia is a good defender, and really quick,” the coach said. “She can run the court, and she’s shown a lot so far. Melanie has a really good handle and a nice shot. She’s made a lot of improvements and she can shoot.”
Freshman guard Julia Paolicelli and freshman guard Julie DeBrocky also hope to contribute.
“Once they get some confidence, they can both make an impact,” the coach said. “They’ve been doing a good job and both of them will continue to get better.”
The Indians also hope that senior guard Katie McDonough, who injured an ACL last year, can return some time this season.
The Indians are also looking at their chances of returning to the playoffs.
“Right now we may be a little behind,” the coach said. “We’re spending time on offense, defense, pressuring… We have a lot of girls to teach. But we will progress game by game. And if we get what I’m hoping for from the younger kids, I think that we can play ourselves into a sectional (playoff) spot.”
Mahopac was scheduled to open the season Tuesday, Nov. 27, vs. Yorktown and then host Monroe Woodbury Thursday, Nov. 29, at 6 p.m.