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Mayes County Area

Verdigris Cardinals Basketball Previews – Presented by Red Crown Credit Union

Coach: Chris Houk
20-21 Record: 20-3

The Cardinals advanced to the Area tournament last season but enter this season ready to make some noise come the postseason. Chris Houk, who is the head coach of the team, says that he likes the makeup of this year’s squad. “This year’s team will be returning two starters from last season,” he said. “But our top six players are solid. They are looking forward to the season and make a competitive run in the playoffs.” Big man Lucas Lechlider (6-8, Sr.) will be a force to be reckoned with down low. He averaged twelve points last season but will look to increase that number this year. Leading the team at guard will be Aaron Buntin (5-11, Sr.). His leadership and consistency impact the team in a big way, and he does it day in and day out without the recognition it deserves. Cody Lechlider (6-2, So.) is an explosive sophomore guard and will be filling a big scoring hole this season left by five seniors that graduated after last season. Isiak Layton (5-11, Sr.), Cameron Lederman (6-4, Sr.), and Dylan White (6-1, Jr.) have all three put in a lot of hard work and will be called upon to step up and play a big role for the team this season. Other Cardinals to keep an eye out for this season are Tyler Willis (5-10, So.), Jonah Scott (6-0, Jr.), and Jase Large (6-1, Jr.). 

Coach: Michael Buntin
20-21 Record: 17-3

The Lady Cardinals are no strangers to post-season runs. While they made the Class 4A state tournament last year, they exited earlier than they had hoped, falling in the first round. Head coach Michael Buntin is in his eleventh year at the helm of the program and says that this year’s squad has the potential to be a playoff contender again. “We will be young with only two returning players with significant varsity experience,” he said. “The success of our season will depend heavily on the development of our young players. However, I believe we will be ready to make a deep run when playoff time comes. We will go back to playing at a more aggressive, faster pace. We have one of the best players in the state in Morgan Borgstadt.” After averaging 15 points, six rebounds, three assists, and three steals a year ago, Borgstadt (6-0, Jr.) is extremely strong and athletic. Not only is she multi-talented on offense, but she is also a very strong defender as well. Guard Emily Stout (5-6, Jr.) does all the little things that make a team successful on the court. However, her best attribute is her contagious enthusiasm. She keeps the team upbeat no matter what is going on. Ciara Daniel (5-8, Jr.), Maddy Daniels (5-2, So.), Brooklyn Fugate (5-6, Jr.), Bobbi Jones (5-9, So.) all saw playing time last season but are ready to make a bigger contribution this year. Other Lady Cardinals that look to play a role this year are Kate Wiginton (5-6, Fr.), Jaycee Adkins (5-6, So.), and Evee Jones (5-6, Jr.).

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