In his fifth year coaching the Agate girl’s basketball team, Coach Dan Lillegaard said, “I think I say this each year, but this is one of the most enjoyable seasons I have had. We have had no issues and the upperclassmen have been great leaders. It has been a wonderful group. They get along well and work so hard every practice and every game without ever complaining. That is all we can ask. Despite our three seniors, we are a young team with no juniors and a number of other underclassmen playing big minutes.”
The Agates have twelve wins despite their very challenging schedule. They open the Class AA playoffs Wednesday with a tough matchup at Rock Ridge. Coach Lillegaard said, “They handled us pretty easily when we traveled there a couple weeks ago, but I would bet that our team will give them a good game.” Rock Ridge has seventeen wins, including a recent twenty-point win over a talented Chisholm team. Esko and Duluth Marshall are among the favorites.
Madison Carlson is a senior who is described by her coach as a wonderful teammate who works very hard. Her coach said, “Coming into this season, Maddie hadn’t played a ton of varsity, but she has improved every day and is always digging for that tough rebound.” I asked Maddie what her best basketball memories are and she responded, “Each game was a highlight for me. I enjoyed every one of them. I had my career high in points this season and I will always remember that game.”
Senior Karly Holm averaged twenty-nine points per game and was selected to the first-team All-Polar League. Karly plans on playing college basketball and has a number of options, but has yet to narrow her choices. She has set the season and career records for three-point shots. She rounds that out with great passing skills and a strong inside game.
Sophomore Rachel Bopp was chosen to be on the second team.