Holiday Invitational

Host school Cary Academy enters girls field

Posted December 21, 2011

When Cary Academy takes the court during at this week’s Holiday Invitational, it should know what to expect. While the Chargers will be playing in the four-team bracket, the academy will be hosting both girls’ tournaments.

Coach Danielle Harber said her team is looking to improve on its 2010-11 campaign — a 19-11 record and a NCISAA quarterfinals loss — with a good run in the holiday tournament.

“I’m optimistic about (our chances),” the third-year coach said. “We are a very talented and athletic team and I want to see if we can gel together.”

Harber said three players — two juniors and a sophomore — are being recruited by college basketball programs.

Mickayla Sanders was the Chargers’ go-to player last season, but Harber said the 6-foot-1 forward doesn’t have to be the No. 1 option.

“We don’t have to rely on her as heavily,” she said. “We’ve had multiple players score in double digits and that means defenses can’t play a box-and-one against her.”

Backing Sanders up is 6-foot-2 shot-blocker Cassy Stafford and sophomore Brianna Powell.

“We want to play an up-paced tempo,” Harber said. “(Powell) offers another scoring threat.”

Harber said the exposure the tournament offers her team can only benefit the team in the future.

“We are really excited about playing (in the tournament),” she said. “This is a great opportunity and we are anticipating some (tough) competition.”


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