Mariner looking to seniors for strong leadership

Veteran guards return for fourth season on varsity
By David Pan | Jun 28, 2017
Photo by: David Pan Senior Hannah Hezekiah will return for her fourth season at Mariner, which has advanced to the district tournament the last two years.

The Mariner girls basketball team will have some new faces joining two key returners.

The Marauders will build their 2017-18 squad around their two most experienced players – guards Hannah Hezekiah and Denisa Grebovic. Hezekiah was a second-team, all-Wesco 4A selection.

Mariner coach Corey Gibb plans to rely on Hezekiah and Grebovic.

“My expectations for Hannah and Denisa are to provide leadership on and off the court,” Gibb said. “They are both four-year varsity players with a lot of court time.”

The Marauders graduated one of their top players in center Zaria Smith, who will be continuing her basketball career at Edmonds Community College. Smith, one of six seniors, came on strong, especially late in the season.

“We will definitely miss her and the other girls that graduated,” Gibb said. “It can be difficult to replace so much court experience. With losing her, other girls will need to step up on both ends of the floor.  You can’t replace a player of Zaria’s ability and skill set, so we’ve spent the summer looking at different line-ups and rotations to find the best one for us to be successful.”

The Marauders played more than 20 games at tournaments and a summer league hosted at Archbishop Murphy High.

Because of the significant turnover in the roster, one of the major goals is simply having the current players get to know each other and learn how they play.

“I was happy with how the girls progressed as a team through the summer,” Gibb said. “We use summer as a chance to get back on the floor and get to know the new girls moving up.”

Gibb was pleased by the commitment shown during the summer by senior-to-be Lina Gonzalez, sophomore Tina Duangmani and sophomore Tiana Nguyen.

They all used the summer to improve their skills and gain some valuable experience, Gibb said.

Mariner will be participating in a fall league and hosting conditioning and open gyms.

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