HILLSBOROUGH: HHS girls hoops looks to improve

By Bob Nuse, The Packet Group
   In her second season as head coach of the Hillsborough High girls basketball team, Barrie Foley is looking for the program to take a step forward.
   ”Last year we didn’t do so well,” said Foley, whose team finished 4-16 and lost in the opening round of the state tournament. “Our conference is very difficult again this year. Our goal to be right around .500. Let’s get to that point and then move up from there. Our conference is difficult with Gill-St. Bernards, Franklin and Bridgewater who we have to play six times total.
   ”Our senior leaders have been doing a great job throughout the preseason and fall. If we needed them to do something they were right on top of it. The other girls look to them for leadership and respect and it is good to have them to look up to.”
   The Raiders had a large senior group last year and return just three seniors this year. Amanda Muller, Kristen Wadams and Ursula Zadzilko are the seniors who will be called on to be team leaders this year. It will also help that Foley has a year under her belt as head coach.
   For my first year it was nice to have the seniors since they knew how things ran and had played varsity before,” Foley said. “This year we have a few more girls who have not played varsity. We have some girls who play all the time on AAU team and really love basketball. It s nice to have the girls who play year round.
   ”Last year things were new. This year it seems to be a little easier rolling through the preseason stuff. This year I know what I want to do and it seems to go little easier.”
   In addition to the senior trio, the Raiders will rely on juniors Megan Muller and Allison Wickman and Sophie Cohen, who all saw varsity minutes a year ago. With the Raiders not scheduled to play their first scrimmage until Saturday, the rest of the roster is still a work in progress.
   ”I think this year we have three senior players and probably six juniors that should be with us and also a couple of sophomores,” said Foley, whose team will open the season on Dec. 20 against Watchung Hills. “We have five returners from last year’s team and three or four of them got decent minutes. Last year we were senior heavy so we have some girls that are not as experienced at the varsity level. We have some good athletic girls who are able to get up and down the floor.”
   Foley is hoping that translates into improved play and more wins, which would be just the step forward she is hoping for from the program.