By Greg Ford
Rikki Jones doesn’t have to worry about finding new players; there are plenty of veteran ones returning.
The key is making sure that group, along with any first-year varsity members, are ready for the upcoming season, which tips off this week.
First, the Lady Mustangs traveled Tuesday to Rockwall Heath and then will host Carthage 5 p.m. Thursday before taking part in this weekend’s Garland ISD Tournament at Sachse and Rowlett High Schools.
The Lady Mustangs open tournament play 3 p.m. Friday at Sachse against Sulphur Springs in pool play, and then will face Skyline at 4 p.m. and Killeen at 6 p.m. The championship and consolation rounds are late Friday and through Saturday.
Regular-season competition resumes Tuesday, Aug. 25 at Frisco Centennial.
“Heath always has a really strong team,” Jones said, “so it will be a really good measuring stick as to how we do against them. The last couple of years we haven’t done very well.”
She added, “I do have a veteran team, so it’s always going to be about chemistry, and the little things. It’s going to be more about the little things (such as passing, covering every ball, talking on defense) than I think it is about the big things. With the veteran team I have we understand the big things. Now, it’s perfecting the little things that will push us over and make us better week to week.”
Jones also said she’s pleased with Sachse’s effort during the offseason, adding that the upcoming Garland tournament will provide much-needed game action for the Lady Mustangs.
“Every coach in the state of Texas wants that first tournament,” Jones said. “You can get six, seven, eight matches. You can get a bunch of lineups in and see how the kids actually perform against team.”
She added, “We’re working hard … They seem self-motivated, which is nice. So far, I’m really pleased and I think we are going to have a great season.”