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Girls basketball players for LT, RB, Naz among locals having breakout seasons

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014 4:30 p.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, Jan. 20, 2014 1:29 p.m. CDT
(Bill Ackerman - backerman@shawmedia.com)
Riverside Brookfield's Samantha Bloom (right) and Westmont's Mara Casper wrestle for the ball during a Jan. 8 game between the two schools. Freshman Bloom has made an immediate impact for the Bulldogs this season.

Each basketball season provides an opportunity for new players to step into the spotlight. From seniors seeing significant playing time for the first time to underclassmen making an impact, these six girls basketball players are having breakout seasons for area teams.

Nina Scaramella

School: Lyons Township

Class: Sophomore

Position: Guard

Impact: Veterans Kayla Morrissey and Victoria Swift have been key figures to the young Lions team, but Scaramella is part of the future of LT basketball. She is the only underclassmen to crack the starting lineup for the Lions and has held down the spot as point guard.

Samantha Bloom

School: Riverside Brookfield

Class: Freshman

Position: Guard

Impact: Three freshmen have been surprising contributors for the Bulldogs, but Bloom has been the most impressive. Displaying excellent ball-handling and passing skills and good shooting range, Bloom is RB’s leading scorer.

“We wouldn’t be the team we are without her,” RB coach Dallas Till said. “She’s been unbelievable.”

Maryam Wilcher

School: Morton

Class: Sophomore

Position: Guard

Impact: Wilcher came to Morton after spending her freshman year with the powerful Trinity program. She made a smooth transition as the Mustangs’ leading scorer. The tall guard is a key piece for the young team to build around for the future.

Jules Raimondi

School: Nazareth

Class: Senior

Position: Forward

Impact: Raimondi is one of just two returning starters on Nazareth, but has shown great improvement in an increased role this season as she is a big scorer and rebounder for the Roadrunners. Raimondi was named to the all-tournament team at Riverside Brookfield over the holiday break and helped the Roadrunners make the championship game.

Jenny Mackowiak

School: Fenwick

Class: Junior

Position: Guard

Impact: The Friars have been forced to deal with major injuries since senior and Creighton recruit Jade Owens has missed most of the season and sophomore returning starter Deja Cage is out for the whole year. Mackowiak stepped up in the absence of those two scorers. The sharpshooter has shown an ability to catch fire and change games with her shooting.

Kietta Saunders

School: St. Joseph

Class: Senior

Position: Guard

Impact: Saunders was a contributor last year but has greatly increased her impact on the Chargers this season. She has more than doubled her scoring average from 5.2 points per game to 10.6 while also leading the team in assists and steals.

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