The young Lady Hornets finished first at "Take it to the Lake" and went 11-0 for the year
If the play of this year's sixth grade travel team is any indicator, the future of Honesdale's girls basketball program looks bright indeed.
Under the direction of coaches Pete Goyette and Kevin Varcoe, the young Lady Hornets just recently put the finishing touches on a dazzling hoops season.
The local lasses turned in a brilliant performance at the 10th Annual “Take it to the Lake” invitational, held at Wallenpaupack Area.
Thanks in large part to tournament MVP Kelly Varcoe, Honesdale defeated both Western Wayne and the host Paupack squad to capture this year's crown.
“This is a wonderful group of girls,” said Coach Goyette. “I really enjoyed working with them. We had a terrific season and I was sorry to see it end.”
Honesdale's sixth graders compete in the Endless Mountains League against the likes of Lackawanna Trail, Tunkhannock, Forest City, Western Wayne and Wallenpaupack Area.
The young Lady Hornets dominated their opponents, averaging 32 points per game on offense while allowing just eight.
Offensive standouts during the regular season included: Varcoe, Hannah Langendoerfer, Sophia Goyette, Lydia Grossman, Libby Stephens, Taylor Maxson, Rachel Olver and Amanda Gunuskey.
“We have some players who can really score,” said Coach Goyette. “But, the strength of this group is its defense. These girls are just absolutely tenacious.”
Defensive stars include Eva Cooley, Trinity Costa, Tara McLaughlin, Cindy Perricone and Natalee West.
With this balance of talent at both ends of the floor, Honesdale soared to a perfect 11-0 mark this year.
The nucleus of this team formed last fall during the Missy Basketball season.
“Every one of these 13 girls has a great attitude,” said Coach Goyette.
“They've been playing and practicing together for six months now and they're still interested in learning and improving.”
By the Numbers
Honesdale drew a first round by at this year's edition of the “Take it to the Lake” tournament.
Western Wayne won its opener, but proved no match for the Lady Hornets.
Varcoe paced the Red & Black attack with a game-high 10 points in leading her team to a 24-7 win and a berth in the finals.
“Kelly is an excellent player with a very good understanding of the game,” said Coach Goyette. “She's a big game player who never lets up on either end of the court.”
Grossman and Goyette also contributed key plays to the cause, tallying four points apiece.
The championship game saw Honesdale face its first real adversity of the season.
Paupack raced out to a 6-0 lead and finished up the first quarter with an 8-5 advantage. That's when the Red & Black ratcheted up the defensive pressure.
“They couldn't handle our halfcourt trap,” said Coach Goyette. “The girls were all over the place, diving after loose balls and creating all kinds of turnovers.”
Honesdale outscored the Buckhorns by a margin of 12-0 in the second quarter to seize momentum once and for all.
In fact, the Lady Hornets held Paupack scoreless in each of the middle two periods en route a highly-satisfying 27-12 victory.
Varcoe, who was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player, rattled the rims for a game-high 10.
Kelly was joined on the All-Tourney team by Cooley and Maxson. Taylor tallied eight points, while Grossman added six.
According to Coach Goyette, the team is slated to remain intact this spring and compete at the AAU level as the “NE Sting.”
“Kevin and I are very proud of everything this team accomplished,” he said. “We look forward to watching them move up in the future.”
Score by Quarters...
HON (11-0) 5 12 6 4 - 27
WAL (9-3) 8 0 0 4 - 12