Last season: 18-7, 5-1 NCC, lost in Class 3A Renssalaer Regional to South Bend St. Joe's
Inside the Panthers
Leading returning scorer: Sammi Adams, 12 ppg
Leading returning rebounder: Taylor Austin, 6.5 rpg
Star power: Adams, Sr., G. She has been a starter since she was a sophomore and has been the player who gets the ball down the stretch of almost every game. Besides leading the team in scoring, she also saw a lot of time at point guard and will see more time there until Griffith coach Tom Golumbeck figures out his rotation. "Sammi has taken some big shots for us in her career," said Golumbeck. "She's a good scorer and defender and is a leader by example."
Newcomer to watch: Courtney Bell, So., G. Bell was a key contributor during the postseason. As the only underclassman to start, Bell will be expected to step up to the successful program's learning curve quick if she is going to stay in the starting lineup. "She played well toward the end of last season and she'll also handle the ball," Golumbeck said.
Looking for a repeat performance
This is not a team that will really ever score 65 points in a game. The Panthers beat teams by playing sound basketball, limiting their mistakes, slowing down the tempo, and playing aggressive defense. Last year they lost in the regional by 3 points in a game that totaled 65 points by both teams. "They made us play a little faster than we wanted and it just came down to a couple possessions. We missed a three at the end and just came up short," Golumbeck said. With its tallest player at 5-10 in Roldan, Griffith will have to rely on its perimeter players and get a good mix of veteran leadership and youthful spring to cut the nets down at its own sectional again. -- Paul Honeycutt