Blue Ridge girls hoops season opens Nov. 19
By Dan Brown / Staff
CASHIERS/GLENVILLE -- Winning is about building a winning attitude, making a team’s players believe they can win.
That’s the job Blue Ridge Early College Athletic Director and Girls Basketball Coach Tim Mayse has been trying to instill in his teams since coming to BREC in 2012.
“You have to believe in yourself that you can win,” Mayse said as his girls basketball team trickled out of the locker room and onto the hardwood. “It’s not just in basketball but in every sport we play here at Blue Ridge. If you believe you are good enough to win, you will win.”
Mayse said the Blue Ridge girls basketball program hasn’t had a winning season since 2002. For the boys it’s been even longer than that.
“Sometime in the 90s,” he said.
Mayse has been working hard to change that attitude and he’s seeing results on the field and court.
“From 1997 to 2012, we made the playoffs five times,” he said. “Since 2012, we’ve made the playoffs every year.”
In 2017, following a 5-18 regular season performance, Blue Ridge advanced to the semi-finals of the Little Smoky Mountain Tournament and pushed arch-rival Highlands to overtime before falling 54-44. In the first round of North Carolina High School Athletic Association Class 1A tournament, the Lady Bobcats drew the Lady Highlanders’ card for the fourth time, playing them close before fading in the fourth quarter.
“We didn’t have the depth last year,” Mayse said. “We’ve got depth this year though.”
Blue Ridge currently fields a roster of 13 players, returning everyone from its 2017-2018 team, plus some younger players making the jump from JV.
The winning mindset Mayse seeks to instill is a carryover from the fall sports season with soccer and volleyball.
“When we’re more successful in our fall sports, we’re successful during our winter sports,” Mayse said. “Win or lose, we want to compete.”
Tri-captains Devon Heenan, Kaitlyn Stewart and Jade Bryson head a Lady Bobcats team fielding five seniors on its 13-player roster. Mayse said his captains will provide leadership on and off the court. Charlotte Sherrill, Madeline Potts and Bryson will be counted on to handle the bulk of the scoring.
“Our first seven players are all showing good leadership in practice so far this season,” Mayse said. “We’ll be counting on them all to help the younger players along.”
Mayse said Hiwassee Dam will be one of the teams to beat in the LSMC in 2018-19, and of course, rival Highlands.
“It’s always going to be close when we play Highlands,” he said of the cross-plateau foe. “Throw the records out the window when these two schools get together. It’s always a big game when we play Highlands.”
The 2018-2019 season gets under way with back-to-back games on the road Nov. 19 against Nantahala, and Nov. 20 against Rosman. The Lady Bobcats kick off their home schedule after Thanksgiving, Nov. 27, taking on Andrews.
BREC wastes no time diving into its LSMC schedule, playing defending champs Hiwassee Dam Nov. 30.
2018-2019 Blue Ridge Girls Basketball Schedule
6 p.m. Nov. 19 -- Blue Ridge visits Nantahala.
6:30 p.m. Nov. 20 -- Blue Ridge visits Rosman.
6:30 p.m. Nov. 27 -- Blue Ridge hosts Andrews.
6:30 p.m. Nov. 30 Blue Ridge visits Hiwassee Dam.
6:30 p.m. Dec. 3 -- Blue Ridge hosts Hayesville.
6:30 p.m. Dec. 4 -- Blue Ridge hosts Swain County.
6 p.m. Dec. 6 -- Blue Ridge hosts Tamassee-Salem.
5:30 p.m. Dec. 11 -- Blue Ridge visits Mount Pisgah.
6:30 p.m. Dec. 12 -- Blue Ridge visits Andrews.
6 p.m. Dec. 14 -- Blue Ridge visits Nantahala.
6:30 p.m. Dec. 17 -- Blue Ridge hosts Brevard.
6:30 p.m. Jan. 3, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Brevard.
6 p.m. Jan. 4, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Asheville School.
5 p.m. Jan. 8, 2019 -- Blue Ridge visits Cherokee.
6:30 p.m. Jan. 18, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Hiwassee Dam.
6:30 p.m. Jan. 22, 2019 -- Blue Ridge visits Swain County.
5:30 p.m. Jan. 23, 2019 -- Blue Ridge visits Mount Pisgah.
6 p.m. Jan. 25, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Nantahala.
6:30 p.m. Feb. 1, 2019 -- Blue Ridge visits Highlands.
6:30 p.m. Feb. 5, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Cherokee.
6 p.m. Feb. 8, 2019 -- Blue Ridge visits Tamassee-Salem.
6:30 p.m. Feb. 12, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Rosman.
6:30 p.m. Feb. 15, 2019 -- Blue Ridge hosts Highlands.
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