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CCA girls set a course for success

North Liberty Leader
TIFFIN– Matt Haas took the helm of the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity girls’ basketball team in 2011 and found a program in trouble. With a new outlook and a new way of doing things, the team closed-out his debut season with a 7-16 record, just one win short of the total wins in the previous three seasons. Last year the Clippers hit the .500 mark at 11-11 (6-8 in WaMaC play for fifth in the conference).
While Haas’ methodology hasn’t always been popular, the results speak for themselves. “The 18 wins over the past two seasons surpasses the amount of games the Clippers won the previous five seasons (2006-2011) combined (16), so we continued to make strides and head in the right direction,” Haas said.
For his third season, Haas has a solid nucleus in the form of three returning starters– Mallory Neubauer, Hanna Stokes and Megan Hall.
Neubauer is a 5’8” senior guard who started 22 of 23 games last year averaging 7.3 points per game with 2.1 rebounds on average. She was fifth in three-point shots in the WaMaC and earned All-Conference Honorable Mention.
Stokes is a 5’11” junior forward who started 22 of 23 games last year averaging 7.5 points per game and making 7.9 rebounds on average. Stokes was third in the WaMaC in rebounding and earned All-Conference Honorable Mention.
Hall is a 5’7” junior guard who started all 23 games last season with an average of 2.7 points per game, two rebounds and 2.4 assists on average. Hall was ranked fifth in the WaMaC in assists with 55 on the season.
Other returning letter winners include seniors Kelly Noska and Molly Villhauer; juniors Kelsey Hall, Lexi Kinnaird, Hannah Mougin and Kiley Seelman. Noska is a 6’1” center who played in 13 games last season averaging 3.8 points per game with 1.3 rebounds. She scored a career-high 16 points in the first round regional game against Grinnell. Villhauer is 5’10” and a center who played in seven games in the ’12-’13 season with 0.7 points and 0.3 rebounds per game. Kelsey Hall is 5’7” and a guard who started 22 of 23 games last year with 1.8 points, 1.9 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. Kinnaird is 5’10” working both as a guard and forward with 23 starts last season. Kinnaird averaged only 0.3 points and .08 rebounds per game, but was ninth-ranked in the WaMaC for her free throws, making 36 out of 53 for 67.9 percent.
Mougin is a 5’4” guard who saw action in all 23 games last year with 3 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game. Mougin was second in the WaMaC for 3-pointers, making 13-28 for 46.4 percent. Seelman is 5’6” and a guard who played in 11 games last season with an average of 1.4 points and 0.5 rebounds per game.
Five juniors: Moriah Johnson, Dacia Lipkea, Lauren Stopko, Alexa Sweeney and Emily Wieland will look to make some waves this season. Johnson is a 5’7” forward, Lipkea a 5’11” forward, Stopko a 5’4” guard, and Sweeney is a 5’5” guard. Wieland transferred from Highland as a 6’0” guard/forward with an average of 7.8 points and 2.9 rebounds per game. Also in Haas’ line-up will be sophomore guard Natalia Turner, a 5’7” guard.
“We are solid all the way up and down the roster,” Haas said, but pointed out that, “playing in the WaMaC Conference means we’re definitely going to face stiff competition every single game. However, over the course of the season, we’re going to try to put on the court a team that will be competitive and able to challenge for a conference championship.”
The coach added the ladies have worked hard during the off-season. “I keep reminding them that good things happen to those who work hard. Like every team in the state, our expectations are high, and we’re going to continue to work hard to try to achieve our goals,” he said.