Knights looking for team effort North County GIRLS HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL PREVIEW

December 03, 1992|By Roch Eric Kubatko | Roch Eric Kubatko,Staff Writer

North County girls basketball coach Sally Entsminger knows that it will require more than one player to fill the void left by forward Renita Johnson. And that's the way she wants it.

"It's going to have to be a team effort," Entsminger said. "People like Renita don't grow on trees. But I think we're better off not picking up the slack with one player."

Johnson, a 5-foot-10 leaper, averaged 16.5 points and 16.8 rebounds her senior season in being chosen to the All-County first team. She had 32 points, 25 rebounds and four blocks in a 54-44 loss to Southern, and later went over 1,000 points for her high school career.

That kind of production will be sorely missed, but Entsminger has better things to do than worry about a player who no longer is in a North County uniform.

For starters, she can think of more ways to get the ball into Joy Farmer's hands.

As a sophomore last year, Farmer averaged 9.7 points and 12.2 rebounds. And that was in a supporting role. This year, she may become the Knights' go-to player.

"She's one to watch, for sure," Entsminger said. "She has to be a big key for us on the boards."

Farmer, a 6-foot center, carried the load last year, on the rare instance when Johnson was off her game. In a 40-32 win over Annapolis last January, she had 10 points and 10 rebounds to offset a seven-point night from Johnson. In December, she led North County with 18 points in a 58-47 win over previously unbeaten Northeast.

Johnson wasn't the only player lost to graduation, and more scoring will be needed from returning players, such as seniors Nicki Faulkner (5-3 guard), Jeanette Merrick (5-8 forward), Becky Webb (5-8 forward) and Mandy Domzalski (5-8 forward) and junior Emma Ketterle (5-4 guard).

Of the eight newcomers to the varsity, Entsminger has been most impressed with 5-11 sophomore center Sara Helms.

"Helms will be a good player. She's got a lot to learn, but she'll be a good player. I think we'll have a good team," said Entsminger, whose squad went 13-10 and lost to Arundel, 57-45, in the region quarterfinals last season.

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