The Wheeling Jesuit Lady Cardinals are focused on remaining a consistent threat
in the WVIAC and the East Region, despite last spring’s graduation of four
starters. The Lady Cards welcome eight new faces to the program, along with
seven returnees, including three seniors.
The Lady Cards’ recent history includes numerous broken
records, a 20045-05 WVIAC conference tournament championship and advancement to
the 2006 NCAA Final Four of the East Regional before losing in an overtime
battle. That season, the team posted a record of 27-5 with a 16-2 WVIAC mark.
During their most recent season, the Lady Cards didn’t appear in the NCAA
tournament, but still posted a strong record of 17-12, breaking the record for
most wins by a class in Wheeling Jesuit history.
The record-breaking senior class of Lindsay Coyne, Katie
Hine, Jenna Johnson and Katie Repicky will be missed. Coyne provided steady play
as the starting point guard while averaging 7.7 points and 2.5 rebounds per
game. Hine was a strong defensive force as a starting guard for the Lady Cards;
she also contributed 6.8 points and 3 assists per game and held the team’s
highest free throw percentage at 89%. Johnson will certainly be missed under the
boards; she contributed a solid 9 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. Repicky led
the team in scoring with 17.5 points per game and recorded 76 steals on the
season. In her Wheeling Jesuit career, Repicky scored over 1,600 points and
broke 11 school records.
Head Coach Joe Key (219-125 in 13 years overall) will look
for underclassmen to step up as WJU returns only one starter from last year’s
line-up, senior Megan O’Donnell. Kristen King, Bridget O’Brien and O’Donnell
will offer the team leadership as the three seniors.
The Lady Cardinals have adapted a full court pressurized
defense over the past few years, and this season will be no different. With
several returnees and some newcomers, the backcourt will undoubtedly be
extremely fast at both ends of the court. The Lady Cards return senior captain
Kristen King and junior captain Shayla Holenka, both of whom provided valuable
minutes as the first two players off the bench last year. Holenka really came
alive during the final stretch last year, replacing Coyne as starting point
guard after Coyne broke a hand.
In addition to the two returning guards, a handful of
newcomers look for immediate playing time at the guard positions. Fresh faces to
the line-up include sophomore Lindsay Stuckey, a 2006 Hiland High School grad
transferring from Division I St. Francis. T h e freshman class includes Kelsey
Deming from Columbus’ Dublin Coffman High School, Bridget Buskirk from Seton
LaSalle High School in Pittsburg h , Tonee Hutton from Ohio’s Hilliard-Darby
High School and C ry s t a l Williams from Park View High School in Northern
The Lady Cards will also feature speedy post players to
bolster the team’s transition game. Returning to the starting line-up is Megan
O’Donnell, who will offer the team both experience and her leadership skills as
a very vocal captain. Along with O’Donnell, senior teammate Bridget O’Brien also
brings valuable experience and leadership as another senior captain. Rachel T h
o m a s is a force on the block for the Lady Cards. Coming off a red-shirt
season as a freshman due to knee injury, Thomas will be expected to dominate the
paint for the team. Sophomore Kim Mueller provided key minutes as an intense and
very scrappy post last year for the Lady Cards; look for her to provide the same
intensity on the court this year. Sophomore Darcy Rusiecki will strengthen the
post line-up as she has taken on the role of a transition player.
Unfamiliar names will soon be familiar as freshmen Anda
Isofache, Nicole I z z o, and Megan Stuvek begin to make an impact. Isofache
comes to W h e e l i n g Jesuit from Romania via Wheeling’s Mount De Chantal
Visitation Academy basketball program. Izzo joins K e l s e y Deming from Dublin
Coffman High School in Ohio and Stuvek comes from Carmichaels High School in