Tough season ahead for young Bear Cubs

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The Lady Bear Cubs’ accomplished a great feat last year by capturing the Bay Valley Conference championship by going undefeated in league play.

The 2005-06 season will bring many more challenges to the team, which lost eight players and all of their starters. The loss of key players is only one setback for the Bear Cubs. The transition of a new coach and a squad made up of mostly freshmen will add pressure to the reigning champions.

Former coach Molly Goodenbour left the JC early in the summer to accept a coaching position at University of San Francisco. Assistant coach Lacey Campbell, a former Sonoma State player, accepted the head coach position. Campbell was left with a relatively blank slate.

“We have a very tough schedule. We have one tournament in Palm Springs. Southern California teams will be tough,” said Campbell.

Their non-conference play isn’t the only challenge for the Bear Cubs. The new conference, the Big 7, will take its toll on the team.

“Delta and Sierra are very tough. We lost to both of them last year,” said Campbell.

Big road games and tough conference play will not dampen the Bear Cubs’ spirit. Returning players Robyn Lockhart, Whitney Losh and Carrie Parr should supply the team with determination and veteran knowledge. Local standouts Katie Frenci (Analy), Jessica Edens (Cloverdale) and Melissa Azevedo (Montgomery) will help solidify the team’s toughness.

“Our ability to never give up is our strength. Katie Frenci never gives up and it puts others in that mind set,” said Campbell.

Azevedo, a powerhouse post player for Montgomery, should prove to be a huge asset for the Bear Cubs.

“She will be shouldering most of the burden for the freshmen,” said Campbell.

Armed with a new coach, stronger conference and a fresh batch of players, the Bear Cubs have a hard road ahead of them to achieve the success they found last season.

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