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Ferris to lead GBB team

Photo by Brian Hansel Former assistant Keith Ferris is the head coach of the WDC girls' basketball team this season.1 / 2
Emily Miron, left, and Melissa Moenkedick have the kind of height that will give Wadena-Deer Creek a strong inside presence on the basketball court this season.2 / 2

An 8-2 finish and some good returning height have given new Wadena-Deer Creek head girls' basketball coach Keith Ferris plenty of optimism about the upcoming cage season.

Ferris picked up plenty serving as assistant coach to head man Brian Silbernick last year and his transition into the top job has been a smooth one.

"This is my fourth year coaching them and that's been a good thing," Ferris said. "I learned a lot from Coach Silbernick last year."

Most of the WDC girls' basketball team made up the 33-0 WDC volleyball team that won the Class AA state title Nov. 13 in St. Paul.

"We have some great athletic girls and I expect to compete with them."

The Wolverines have a 1,000-point career scorer at the guard spot in senior Courtney Volkmann.

"She has very good vision of the court and she can always make plays," Ferris said.

The Wolverines will have great size inside when 6-0 senior Rachel Craig, 6-2 sophomore Emily Miron and 6-1 sophomore Melissa Moenkedick are on the court. Craig was in and out of the post last year and provided the club with some solid rebounding. Miron gave the Wolverines some welcome scoring punch and some double-figure rebounding. Moenkedick improved tremendously during the off-season and is expected to fight Parkers Prairie sophomore transfer Courtney Dumproppe for the fourth post spot.

Ferris is counting heavily on 5-10 senior Kelsi Crawford to give the Wolverines a strong player down low. Crawford is both strong and physical.

"She's not afraid to get in there," Ferris said.

Other players vying for positions will be junior Avery Jackson, sophomore Caitlin Volkmann, freshman Heather Theisen, freshman Hope Theisen, freshman Sydney Schissel, junior Kaitlin Ditsworth, freshman Katelyn Hanson, sophomore Macy Hartman and freshman Paige Hartman.

Ferris likes Jackson's quickness and defensive skills. Having lost guard Hannah Toedter to graduation, the Wolverines may have to ask for more scoring from Caitlin Volkmann. Ferris likes the shooting skills of Heather Theisen and the quickness and defensive abilities of her sister, Hope. Ferris believes Schissel has the potential to be an outstanding player. Ditsworth has not played basketball for three years but she will bring good athletic skills to the post. Hanson is just a freshman but Ferris likes her talent. Macy Hartman could see action in a utility role because of her terrific work ethic. Paige Hartman has also been a hard work WDC practices.

Ferris rates Pequot Lakes, Hawley and Perham as three of the area's top cage teams this season.