Millerettes open season with Lawton Saturday

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Gabby Tilley (left) and Ruby Barker doubleteam Oklahoma Storm’s Chloe Islas during a recent scrimmage. The Millerettes open the season Saturday at Lawton. (Photo by Chuck Reherman)

By Chuck Reherman
Sports Editor
After a “21-day break” Yukon’s Millerette basketball team will finally get to open the season.
YHS will travel south to Lawton to take on the Lady Wolverines in a noon contest at Tomlinson Middle School. It is the only game on the slate as the junior varsity game was canceled and no boys game was scheduled. The game was originally scheduled for 4:45 p.m. at Lawton High School, but was moved to noon on Friday
The Millerettes had originally set a Nov. 20 season opener with Oklahoma City Northwest Classen and were suppose to have opened the Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference slate on Tuesday with Mustang. Both of those games, along with Edmond Deer Creek on Friday have been postponed. The Mustang game has been reschuled for Jan. 26.
Yukon will face a Lawton team that will be somewhat of a mystery. Because of the Covid-19 spike, most teams have not been able to scrimmage through the month of November. YHS missed three weeks of practice due to the Coronavirus, but have been able to come back and put in five workouts last week and will have five more under their belt before facing the Lady Wolverines on Saturday.
“We know Lawton had a rough year last year, but they do have a new head coach, so we don’t know a lot about them,” Millerette head coach Roy Wyckoff said. “I’m going to try and scrounge up some film on them from scrimmages if there is any.
“The good thing is they won’t know much about us either,” he said. “I expect it will be a good test. We kept the same time after the JV game was canceled and the plan is we go down and play assuming we get to Saturday and we are able to. Everything is in flux right now.”
Despite the three week layoff (players did workout on their own and Wyckoff said the team held zoom workouts as well), the Millerettes have come back ready to play and haven’t missed too much of a beat.
Wyckoff said the true test of that will come Saturday when the Millerettes take the court for the first time against an opponent.
“Practices have been going pretty good to be honest,” Wyckoff said. “We had that 21 day break which wasn’t ideal, but we came back healthy and last week had some pretty good practices and continued that through today.
“We had the one scrimmage and we were missing two girls who are going to play a lot for us,” he said. “That was really the only good look we have had against someone else. I really don’t know what we are going to look like when we step on the court, but we know practices have been going good.
“We have tried to get in as many practices as we can before we played a game. We will get that and sprinkling in some new things and primarily trying to get us back to where we were before we had that ling layoff.
“Conditioning may be more of an issue than it has been because of the time off, the quaratines and all that. We can only practice for a certain amount of time and so how much conditioning we can get in has been the thing. We will just have to sub a little more and everyone will have to be ready to go.”
With the three week layoff, most teams would basically have to start over with what they had to work on. But, Wyckoff was pleased how much his team retained and were able to pick up where they left off.
“We didn’t have to start over, it is more of getting ourselves back to where we left off,” he said. “They knew what we were trying to do, the terminology and they worked out on their own.

Avery Sims scrambles for a loose ball during a scrimmage against the Oklahoma Storm. (Photo by Chuck Reherman)

“We have eight girls that depending on the night and who we are playing can step in and be a starter for us,” he added. “I have an idea of who will start, but it will come down to a match-up situation, a health situation, but I think we have the numbers to have eight or nine that could start.”
The Millerettes do have starting experience back, Senior Sydney Brown returns as the leading scoring for the team, having started 20 games last season and has been a varsity player since her freshman year and starter since a sophomore.
Meya Case returns to the line-up after missing half of last season with an ankle injury and will play a key role again this season.
Nariyah Parks was a part-time starter last year that logged several minutes on the court. Ruby Barker and Audrey Boyd also have varsity experience.
Wyckoff will have to develop an inside game as the team lost all their “bigs” from last year. But, the team has some new faces and some young players that Wyckoff has said shown a lot of promise during workouts and is ready to see that they can do against an opponent.
“We have some players that have played a lot for us since they were freshmen and we will lean on them a lot early on,” Wyckoff said. “We have some younger players, some freshmen, sophomores and juniors that will give us some good minutes.
“We have a tough schedule head of us and we are excited about the challenge,” he said. “Hopefully we can get that game in Saturday and go from there. Hopefully that game gets us in the right direction as we head into conference play.”