LEMONT – Last spring, Kim Jerantowski helped lead Lemont’s soccer team to a fourth place finish in Class 2A.
Now Bill Bozue is hoping the senior can have a similar impact on the court, where his girls basketball team is coming off a 14-14 record in 2012-13.
“I already told her, jokingly but also kind of seriously, that we will ride her coattails and see what she can do,” Bozue said. “Hopefully she can set the table and make everyone else better.”
Jerantowski isn’t the only player to return with experience. Fellow seniors Rachel Hall, Jenny Hennig and Carly Motto are also back along with sophomore Maddie Vermejan, who was called up to the varsity midway through her freshman year.
“I think we will be able to push the ball, and will try to press and run because we are not too tall,” the coach said. “We do have some quick players and hopefully we will be able to get some easy baskets. And we do have enough talent to run a structured offense and get good shots.”
A newcomer to keep any eye on is sophomore center Marissa Dyer, who could be a key contributor this season.
“She has real good jumping ability,” Bozue said, “and nice touch around the basket. She could get into double figures in scoring which would be a real nice plus for us.”
One concern with a lack of height is rebounding.
“It always is [a concern], giving people only one shot,” Bozue said. “If we are able to keep teams off the boards, that will be huge.”
In terms of the conference race, Hillcrest again appears to be the class of the South Suburban Blue division.
“In our division, Hillcrest for sure,” Bozue said. “And TF North and TF South are very strong. In the other division, Oak Lawn is a very, very good team. Last year they led Hillcrest for most of the game and ended up losing by six.”
Lemont does have three freshmen on the roster to start the season, leaving the first few weeks of the season extremely important to generate chemistry before heading into league play.
“We’d love to get off to a fast start, but with all of the young players, it’s a little bit of the unknown,” Bozue said. “All of them have the ability to contribute as early as possible and make steady improvement and I can’t see why they wouldn’t. They all work hard and have lots of potential.”