Youth movement shakes up Knights | Girls basketball

King’s is bringing back only 4 players
By David Pan | Aug 03, 2017
Photo by: David R Pan Junior-to-be guard Dominique Kirton is one of the few returning players with experience for King’s next season.

A busy offseason for King’s girls basketball team wrapped up last month when the Knights headed to California for two select tournaments.

It’s the first time that coach Dan Taylor had taken a team down to the Golden State.

“I’ve never done that. I’m doing it this year because we have such a young group,” Taylor said.

About six freshmen joined the rest of the varsity squad for the trip south that also included some down time at Disneyland.

The 2017-18 Knights are shaping up to be the youngest team Taylor has coached at King’s, but it’s a squad that has depth at some positions.

Last year’s team, even with five seniors, was a young team in terms of varsity experience with only two returning starters.

Junior-to-be guard Dominique Kirton will be the most experienced player. The 5-foot-10 standout is a two-year varsity letter winner.

“We’re expecting her to have a big year,” Taylor said. “Hopefully, we can use her leadership to groom the younger players.”

Kirton gives Taylor some flexibility in the lineup. In the past, she’s played every position on the court, depending on the team’s needs.

“She knows our offense,” Taylor said. “She’s willing and open to take on whatever role we give her.”

Taylor isn’t necessarily looking to have Kirton play point guard. The Knights are looking at junior Rachel Phelan and two freshmen – Claire Gallagher and Peri Welch. Others also may be in the mix.

“This probably is the deepest team as far as point guards,” Taylor said. “We may have three or four girls at that position. … We’re still working on that.”

Phelan swung between varsity and junior varsity last season. She, Kirton and sophomores Camile Florez and Emma Storkson were named co-captains. The four, the only varsity returners, will be relied on for leadership on-and-off the court.

The scoring for the Knights has been spread off this spring and summer. King’s has played in three tournaments – Edmonds, Lynden Christian and its own.

“No one is doing the majority of the scoring,” Taylor said. “We have seen a lot of leading scorers each time we play.”

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