MHS GBB

Junior guard Serena Sundell scored 34 points in the first game of Maryville girl's basketball's season opener Nov. 26 to set a new program record with 1,124 points in her career.

It took all of one game into the season for Maryville girl's basketball to see a record-setting performance. Junior point guard Serena Sundell tallied 34 points in the Spoofhounds' victory to push her composite total to 1,124, claiming the school's scoring record.

The previous record was held by Jennifer McGary with 1,121 points in three seasons at Maryville. For Sundell, the feat was rather paltry in the grand scheme of the team's ultimate goals.

“It’s exciting,” Sundell said. “I take a lot of pride in it, but there’s still a lot of work to do.”

In Maryville’s matchup against Savannah, Sundell scored 14 points in the first quarter, leading the ’Hounds to a 20-12 lead. Maryville pushed its lead to 34-22 by half. The Spoofhounds took their largest lead of the game in the fourth quarter off of a Sundell steal and layup. The layup put Maryville ahead 64-22 en route to its first victory of the season, one over a Midland Empire Conference foe.

Maryville coach Quentin Albrecht was happy with the performance on display in the first game of the season.

“I thought that we did a great job of getting on the floor for loose balls, I thought that the hustle was there,” Albrecht said. “I thought we had a decent level of communication, and I was also very happy that we had pretty widely dispersed scoring.”

Maryville returned three starters from last season, where the Spoofhounds fell 47-39 in the Class 3 District 16 Championship to St. Pius X. The gaps will be filled by freshman guard Anastyn Pettlon and freshman forward Rylee Vierthaler. Pettlon scored 12 points in her debut with four buckets from beyond the arc. Vierthaler added 6 points of her own.

Both Albrecht and Sundell noted that communication will be important in the early in the season with five talented underclassmen on the floor on any given night.

“Heading into our second game we still have a lot of kinks to work out so communication will be a big key to figure out in those confusing times,” Sundell said. “Seeing them come in and filling big roles that we lost to seniors last year is really exciting and gives our team more confidence.”

Despite their youth, the ’Hounds aren’t going unnoticed. Maryville received votes in Class 3 in the Missouri Basketball Coaches Association Preseason Poll.

“I think it’s really good that people are starting to recognize that we are not just a team that’s gonna get blown through. We are a team that is gonna put up a fight; we are competition,” senior shooting guard Molly Renshaw said about the honor.

Albrecht wants the team to continue growing from season to season. After falling in last year’s district championship, he believes this season will bring another opportunity, but a different outcome.

“Our team goal for this season is to improve on everything we did last year from our team camaraderie to our communication to more concrete goals like winning our conference, winning our district and winning every tournament that we participate in,” Albrecht said.

The Spoofhounds will get started on Albrecht’s goals sooner rather than later. Really, the Spoofhounds have started on the goals as of recent. In the aftermath of the win against Savannah, Maryville returned to Savannah High School Dec. 3 for the Savannah Invitational, where the ’Hounds defeated another conference foe in Benton 44-27. Maryville is looking forward to the tough task of playing stiff competition in the early going of the season.

“Seeing really good competition early on is really gonna help us, because we can’t get better if we don’t play hard and play good teams,” Renshaw said. “Seeing good teams will help us grow.”

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