Winter sports seasons will be getting underway soon for the Liberty Bell High School boys’ and girls’ basketball teams, and for the wrestling team.
The boys’ varsity basketball team is scheduled to play at the Okanogan Jamboree on Tuesday (Nov. 27). Regular season play for the varsity boys’ and girls’ teams begins on Nov. 29, when they host Pateros. The girls tip off at 6 p.m., and the boys follow at 7:30 p.m.
The boys’ and girls’ teams will then host home games on Dec. 1 against Omak. Tip-off is at 6 p.m. for the girls and 7:30 p.m. for the boys, according to the cwbathletics.com website.
The wrestlers will be at the Omak Pioneer Invitational on Dec. 1, then host the Liberty Bell Mixer on Dec. 5.
Last year, the Lady Lions placed second in the CW 2B girls’ basketball league and qualified for postseason play with a season record of 13-10 and league record of 12-4. Liberty Bell was eliminated in the District 5/6 tournament by Brewster.
Head coach Ed Smith retired after the 2017-18 season, and his assistant, Stephanie Mitchell, takes over as the Lady Lions’ head coach this year. Returnees this year are junior Ali Palm, junior Tommie Ochoa and sophomore Sammy Curtis, who were the third-, fourth- and fifth-leading scorers on last year’s team behind graduates Lauren Ochoa and Katie Labanauskas. Freshman Jadyn Mitchell advances to the varsity this year after a strong JV season.
Palm and Ochoa were both accorded honorable mention in All League honors last year. They were members of the Lady Lions’ soccer team that competed in the state tournament last weekend, as was Naomi Carter.
The varsity boys’ basketball team will be looking to reverse the fortunes of the previous two seasons, which they finished with winless records of 0-20. Top scorers in the 2017-18 season among possible returnees were senior Simon Studen and senior Peter Aspholm, who was named Liberty Bell’s most valuable player last year.
Last year, Liberty Bell sent three wrestlers to the state tournament: Finlay Holston, who took first in the 192-pound division and graduated in 2018, junior Jed McMillan at 120 pounds and sophomore Bodie Paul at 145 pounds. McMillan and Paul did not place. On the girls’ side, Liberty Bell junior Shelby White competed in the regional tournament but did not advance to state.