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by Megan Hall, Student Sports Reporter

Attention Caney Nation, it is basketball season in the mountains and this is one of the most eagerly awaited times here at Alice Lloyd College! This year we anticipate seeing great things from both our women and men’s groups. The student-athletes have dedicated many hours to prepare for this upcoming season, and we as their fans look forward to seeing this show on the court.

The Alice Lloyd Lady Eagles team is looking to improve on last season’s seeding in the tournament and plans on coming out of the gate strong this year. The squad will be led by two seniors

  • #12 Emily Clonce from London, KY
  • #21 Amber Shepherd from Hueysville, KY

As for the rest of the group, they will provide quality maturity this year. For the first time in a while, the club will be experienced as there are only three new incoming freshmen on the team.

  • #3 Colbi Johnson from Hazard, KY- Freshman
  • #22 Jayla Spurlock from Martin, KY- Freshman
  • #45 Shayne Raferty from Pineville, KY- Freshman
  • #2 India Hairston- James from Charleston, WV- Sophomore
  • #20 Elizabeth Prater from Prestonsburg, KY- Sophomore
  • #23 Whitney Evans from Bulan, KY- Sophomore
  • #42 Caitlin Adams from Stanford, KY- Sophomore
  • #5 Bailey O’Bryan from Richmond, KY- Junior
  • #11 Miranda Wilson from Corbin, KY- Junior
  • #24 Kayla Wilson from Corbin, KY- Junior

When asked about his squad, Lady Eagles mentor John Mills was very upbeat about the prospects for a big year:

“The 2016-17 version of the ALC Lady Eagles is one that is going to prove exciting to watch. The pace of our play will be extremely fast with shots flying from everywhere. We are both quicker and deeper than in years past, and overall should be a skilled offensive unit. It should be a fun group to root for led by our seniors Amber Shepherd and Emily Clonce. We will also rely heavily on returning players Sara Robinson, Bailey O’Bryan, India Hairston-James, Whitney Evans, Caitlin Adams, and Elizabeth Prater. Twin transfers Miranda and Kayla Wilson are established perimeter players that will bring heady play while freshman, Jayla Spurlock, Colbi Johnson, and Shayne Rafferty will be battling for minutes as well.” 

The Alice Lloyd Eagles men’s team, led by Coach JR Hammond, should be a fun group to watch as well this year. The Eagles are hoping the success of last season’s KIAC Tournament runner-up finish and bid to the NCCAA National Tournament in Lake Winona, Indiana will make the squad hungry for more. They will have a definite youth movement as only one senior returns this season:

  • #12 Mason Pack from Mingo, WV

The men’s team is experienced in the backcourt as they return two  key starters in Austin Crisp and Ryan House and they have brought in five new freshmen with a lot of potential.

  • #1 Ian Lee from Nitro, WV- Freshmen
  • #2 Blake Smith from Manchester, KY- Freshman
  • #3 Luka Stojicevic from Belgrade, Serbia – Freshman
  • #4 Alex Sergent from Harlan, KY- Freshman
  • #22 Connor Hoskins from Buckhorn, KY- Freshman
  • #21 Ryan House from Manchester, KY- Sophomore
  • #25 Sean Ross from Somerset, KY- Sophomore
  • #10 Austin Crisp from Flemingsburg, KY- Junior
  • #11 Jake Handshoe from Winchester, KY- Junior
  • #14 Greyson Griffith from Boyd, KY.- Junior
  • #33 Jake Allen from London, KY- Junior

We look forward to a thrilling season from both units. Caney Nation will always be behind both squads as the “Sixth Man” hopes to inspire them to what we expect will be many victories. The two clubs open the regular season tonight (November 1st)when they travel to Grayson, KY to battle the Kentucky Christian University Knights in a doubleheader. Tip-off is scheduled for 6:00 PM for the Lady Eagles and the Eagles game will follow. We wish both teams good luck!