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Lady Devils return top scorers
Blue Devil Women's Basketball
By Scott A. Kolb The Post-Bulletin, Austin MN

Starting out the season with a number of tough road games will test the Riverland women's basketball team over the first two weeks of the season.

The road games start tonight with a trip to Richland Center, Wis. The Lady Blue Devils of Riverland then go the other way down Interstate 90 to Worthington this weekend for the Minnesota West Tournament.

Having a solid group of returning sophomores should make life on the road a little easier for the Lady Devils. Krista Viehauser, Joni Lillo, Brooke Rosenstiel, and Danyel Hythecker are all returning sophomores.

Another key addition is the return of sophomore guard Krissy Schemmel, who had a medical red-shirt last season due to a knee injury. Viehauser was the leading scorer last season in the Minnesota College Athletic Conference, South Division at 21.7 points per game.

"Krissy would've been one of our top scorers last year, Joni was over 10 points, and Brooke near 10 per game, so we return a lot of scoring," Riverland coach Suzy Hebrink said. "We also have more depth in the post, which will help Krista get open shots.

"We need to work at making good decisions with the ball and cut down on the turnovers. If we can stay out of foul trouble, then should have a good team."

The Lady Devils wrapped up their 2009-2010 season with a conference win over Fergus Falls and finished with an 11-15 record. Riverland didn't qualify for the MCAC State Tournament last season.

A talented group of incoming freshmen players will help the Lady Devils. Robin Arjes played for Austin High last season and is a good rebounder. She will also add some scoring punch at the center position.

Selena Gindratt is also a center, who will see time at the forward spot. She can score on the inside and should be a presence on the boards. Bridget Bergstrom and Rebecca Burnham are also first-year forwards.

In the backcourt, the Lady Devils also have a nice influx of talent. Cassie Masberg, McKenzie Martin, and Kim Craig, who played for the Southland Rebels last season, will add more depth at the guard spots.

"All of the guards are good outside shooters, and we'll look for them to spot up beyond the three-point line," coach Hebrink said. "With more depth in the post, it will allow Krista to move outside a little more and expand her shooting range.

"We have a few long road trips to open the schedule. At the tournament this weekend, we play Madison Tech out of Wisconsin and they're ranked No. 1 in the country. We'll find out right away what kind of team we have this season."

Playing three games in the next four days, the Lady Devils will then take a brief break from the court. The home opener is scheduled for Nov. 20 against North Iowa Area Community College.