Media day photos by Cody Ottinger and Kara Raeth | CatchMark
Hart’s 2021-22 girls basketball team attended the VanDyk Mortgage West Michigan Conference media day last Wednesday at the Viking Athletic Center (VAC) in Whitehall.
Here is a season preview for the Pirates, who are considered favorites to win the league title:
COACH: Travis Rosema (4th season)
LAST YEAR’S RECORDS: 17-5 overall (12-2 West Michigan Conference, 2nd place).
RETURNING STARTERS: Jayd Hovey (Senior, Guard, 5-9); Morgan Marvin (Senior, Forward, 6-0); Mariana VanAgtmael (Junior, Guard, 5-6); Aspen Boutell (Junior, Guard, 5-5).
KEY RETURNEES: Abby Hicks (Sophomore, Guard, 5-7); Audrey Aerts (Senior, Forward, 5-8).
NEW PROSPECT: Addi Hovey (Freshman, Forward, 5-9)
STRENGTHS: Hart returns a lot of players who contributed last season, which will help with experience and leadership. The Pirates’ overall athleticism and ability to play a fast-paced game also are strengths.
WEAKNESSES: Rosema believes his team is very solid overall and will continue to work on improving weaknesses, but one area of concern is a lack of height.
SEASON OUTLOOK: Hart is the overwhelming favorite to capture the West Michigan Conference title after getting close each of the past two seasons, when the Pirates were edged by Montague. Returning to lead the way is senior guard Jayd Hovey, the Indiana Wesleyan commit, who was voted the top player in the conference each of the last two seasons.
Last season, all five of Hart’s losses came against ranked teams, which went on to appear in regionals.
“If we continue to stay hungry and trust the process, we should be competing or a conference crown and make a deep playoff run,” said Rosema, who boasts a talented roster.
Aside from Jayd Hovey, Marvin is receiving recruiting interest from Muskegon Community College, Glen Oaks, Alma and Adrian. Addi Hovey, Jayd’s younger sister, is a very good athlete. Rosema said she has a fast first step and unbelievable jumping ability.
Senior Kendall Williamson would provide a big lift for the Pirates, but she is expected to sit out the season after tearing both ACLs. Rosema said she is still getting a scholarship to run track in college.
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