The way second-year coach Fred Conlogue figures it, Mt. Blue needs to be five points better in each direction.
The Cougars scored about 35 points and allowed around 45 during their 5-13 campaign in 2016-17.
“We feel if we can cut the 45 down to 40 and get the offense up to 40, we going to be able to compete with those teams and have a chance to win those games that we lost,” Conlogue said. “We’re going to be more on those games.”
Mt. Blue returns about 20 of its points per game from last year, led by sophomore Lexi Mittelstadt, who led the Cougars with about nine points per game as a freshman, and senior center Rebecca Harmon, who averaged around 6 ppg.
Mittelstadt take over the point guard position after moving away last year after defenses keyed on her.
“She needs the ball in her hand and helping us to make the right decision to get it down there,” Conlogue said. “She’s going to get her shots and her points wherever she is this year — she knows how to get away from people. We’ve kind of evolved a little bit to where we can help her get open, as well.”
Jocelyn Dagget and Mariel Damon also return from last year. Beyond that, there isn’t much varsity experience.
But, add in Mackenzie Libby, Jacelyn Dagget and Aislynn Povencher and newcomers and players who were JV players last year, Conlogue likes the Cougars’ potential and work ethic.
“I see an extremely athletic group that has worked very hard starting this summer and wants to get better,” he said.
Coach: Fred Conlogue (second year)
Conference: KVAC; Class: A North
Last year’s results: 5-13
Returning athletes: Seniors — Jocelyn Daggett, Rebecca Harmon; Junior — Mariel Damon; Sophomore — Lexi Mittelstadt.
Key losses: Leah St. Laurent, Kasadie Barker, Natalie Pierce, Hannah LeClair.
Promising newcomers: Juniors — Jacelyn Daggett, Ace Provencher, Alex McAuley, Sierra Fay, Mackenzie Libby; Sophomores — Molly Harmon, Ashley Parlin; Freshmen — Kylie Reynolds, Rylee Keaten.