DOVER-FOXCROFT-- Expectations are not always high for a team that is coming off a three win season.
Expectations are very high for a Foxcroft Ponies girls basketball team that finished 3-15 last season.
Foxcroft has a strong nucleus returning, plus they have two players returning to the program that should give a big boost to the Ponies.
Junior Brianna Skolfield transferred from Central. Skolfield attended schools in the Foxcroft district through middle school.
She returns as one of the better post players in the state.
Junior Julia Annis is known as one of the better field hockey players in the state.
Annis is a great athlete, that will add another solid post player for the Ponies.
"Bri Skolfield is a big returner coming back to Foxcroft. She is probably one of the best post players in the state, at least class B,"coach Blake Smith said. "Julia Annis is another newcomer. This is her first year back to playing basketball. She is a crazy athlete, she gets her hand on every rebound. She has good instincts. She will be a key for us."
Mackenzie Coiley, Amber Anderson, and Brittany Dyer will provide the Ponies with senior leadership.
"Mackenzie Coiley returns as a senior. She was the leading scorer in the big east conference plus she was our leading rebounder,"Smith said. "We also have Amber Anderson. She has been with us since she was a freshman. She is doing some real good things around the basket. Brittany Dyer emerged last year at the end of last season, shooting threes out of no where."
Foxcroft will have a deep team that will include sophomore Madison Chadbourne. Last year, Chadbourne put up solid numbers as a starter.
The Ponies will have an offense that should be solid with the inside presence of Skolfield, Annis, Anderson, and Chadbourne, plus the outside shooting threat of Coiley and Dyer.
"We also have Madison Chadbourne, she started last year for us as a freshman. She is a fight to get a starting position,"Smith said. "We have had at least three girls in double figures in each of our preseason games.It is nice to not have just a one dimensional attack. We are very diverse with our offense now. We are consistently putting up 50 or 60 points per game in the preseason, where last year we were lucky to get out of the 30's."
The Ponies were picked fifth in the Eastern Maine Sports Blog/Eastern Maine high school sports examiner class B girls basketball preseason predictions.
"Our expectations are to be in the hunt. There are some premier teams in class B East. MDI, Nokomis, Presque Isle. We hope to be right in there behind those teams,"Smith said. "I am very excited, it should be some fun basketball."
The future also looks bright, with a strong group of freshmen that could get some playing time this season.
Coiley, Annis, and Skolfield each have earned one athlete of the week honor from the Eastern Maine Sports Blog/Eastern Maine high school sports examiner.
Foxcroft will open the season with a game at Ellsworth. The home opener will be against MDI. Click here for the full schedule.