By Coach Rex Raub

The UMS 7th grade girls basketball team took a roller coaster ride this season, sharing many ups and downs from November through February. From a record standpoint, the team was 2-9 for the A team and 5-4 for the B team. As for the goals they and Coach Raub wanted to reach, the season was a huge success.
Taking the court as 7th graders was an exciting time for the girls, an opportunity to continue developing the skills and fundamentals they learned from Coach Hookham, as well as learning to run a more complex offense and play cohesively as a team. They did this progressively through every game, showing improvement in practice with each passing week. It didn’t matter if the girls had to play against taller girls or better shooting teams. They continued to work hard at practice in an effort to better compete.
The first games of the season were challenging, as the girls faced more experienced teams that were just finishing their “split” seasons. Against teams with similar experience, the girls did much better. While they only scored four points against Waverly-Shell Rock, the team came from behind to defeat Dike-New Hartford in a real nail-biter. After getting beaten on the road early in the season by Waterloo Columbus, 31-11, the team’s defense continued to improve, holding Columbus to just 18 points in the rematch at home later in the season.
The season ended on a high note. Divided into three squads, with each playing a little more than a quarter, it was very rewarding to see them rise to the occasion and play well to defeat Wapsie Valley, 30-21.
Members of the Union Middle School 7th Grade Basketball Team included Jocelyn Gates, Gracie Rathe, Bailey Foulk, Sadie Hennings, Belle Olson, Kylee Petersen, Elle Hookham, Alana Higgins, Carlyn Spore, Laura Rempe, Ellie Rathe, Meagan Clapp, Alexis Folkerts, Lizzy Borton, Alexa Weber and Dominique Marvin.
The girls were very enjoyable to coach. They worked hard, didn’t complain, and tried to improve. A big thank you goes out to all the parents for their great support during the season. It was greatly appreciated.