Parkers Chapel’s senior girls will get their basketball season underway Monday in the Mount St. Mary’s Tournament. The Lady Trojans will take on Pulaski Academy at 6 p.m.
The Lady Bruins advanced to the semifinals of last year’s 4A State Tournament.
“I’ve tried to look up stuff on them for this current year. So far, I can’t find anything on if they’ve played yet,” said PC coach Justin Welch. “I’ve got some stuff as far as what they were doing last year. But, I know they had several seniors on the team so it’s been kind of hard piecing things together this early in the season.
“I know they’re obviously a really good basketball school. They like to change up defenses a lot. They’ll go from man to zone, back to man, constantly changing. It’s going to be a really good challenge for our girls.”
This will be the third season for the Lady Trojans competing in the Mount St. Mary’s Tournament, which includes primarily larger schools. Also in the field will be Star City, Heber Springs, Conway Christian, Mills, Little Rock Southwest and the host Belles.
“I’m just looking for quality basketball. Some tournaments you go to, you’re not going to find quality as you will in this tournament from top to bottom,” said Welch. “I think if we want to compete with the better teams in 2A basketball, we’d better play some really good basketball teams so we can learn to play that style of basketball, where it’s true basketball. I think it’s good for the girls to compete against some of the best in the state.”
Welch emphasized the purpose of competing in the event, which is to get prepared for later in the season. The Lady Trojans have advanced to the 2A state tournament the past two seasons after dropping the season opener to Class 5A Marion at Mount St. Mary’s.
“We’ve taken our lumps and bruises. Last year we ended up losing to a couple of really good basketball teams but we were able to win a game in the tournament. I thought that gave us a lot of confidence going into the season. We just want to go up there and get better as a basketball team. I think win or lose in this tournament you’re going to get better,” he said.
“I know some people don’t agree but I think iron sharpens iron. If I want our girls to be the best at something, we’re going to have to go play against the best. We’re excited for the challenge. The girls are, too. They don’t shy away from competition.”