In his first year as a teacher and coach at Oakdale Junior High School, Bobby Cole took on the seventh grade girls basketball team and turned them into champions. The girls went 17-0 on the year and won the MVAL, Mid Valley Athletic League, tournament.
“The first thing that stood out with this team is how great the girls were. They are great kids that were very coachable,” said the coach. “With that said the girls learned quick and developed really well throughout the season.”
Oakdale’s starting five were Abby Cogborn, Tori Cadwell, Roxanne Anderson, Mary-Jane ‘MJ’ Destro and Jade Manriquez. Cogborn was named Most Outstanding Player, Anderson was named Most Consistent. Manriquez brought home the team’s Most Improved award. Destro took home the Best Defender award and Coach Cole called her “The leader and heart of the team.” He also credited Cadwell as “a relentless scorer and always on the attack.”
The team had role players off the bench that included Savannah Borba, Hannah-Beth Norman, Karli Jericoff, Lydia Stueve, Madison Brown, Nicole Carter, Rudy Fink, Katelynn Silva, Madisen Whitson, Emma Nelson, Emalee Britt and Emily Stone.
During the season, Cole said that each night everyone contributed and became a factor.
“At the end of the day I had a blast coaching this group. We won and had fun at the same time,” Cole noted.
Next week The Leader will highlight the unbeaten OJHS eighth grade girls basketball team.