Moscow High School
Conference: 4A Inland Empire League
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Head Coach: Robin Barnes
Years as Head Coach: 7th Season
Previous Experience: 2 previous years at Moscow, 8 years head coach at Genesee, combined 12 years 7th-JV teams at Moscow
Record Last Year: 10-12
State Titles: 5 titles in the 90’s
Gracey Meyer P 11
Claire Haeder p 12
Returning Players with Honors:
Gracey Meyer First Team All-League
Key Players lost from last year:
Jada Simpson PG leadership and now playing NAIA basketball
Nona Meyer P strong and now playing NWAACC basketball
Incoming impact players:
Hannah Broyles G 10
Megan Jung G 10
Written by: Brandon McIntosh
Coming within one point of qualifying for the State tournament a year ago, the Moscow Bears and Coach Robin Barnes (entering her 7th season) look to reload and rebound this season. The goal is not only to get better in league, but to not play in a play-in game to State. The goal is to do what is needed from start to finish and not leave anything to chance. The goal with the Bears is to win the league title and take the automatic berth to State for the first time since 2012-13.
On paper, this task looks impossible. Lost are six quality seniors, two of which are playing collegiately in Jada Simpson (NAIA) and Nona Meyer (NWAACC). The talent that was lost would make most coaches believe a State bid would be impossible. Only returning two players to the varsity. How do they have a shot? Their opportunity was last year to make a statement and they came up one point short. The Bears can’t compete with having to reload.
Someone better tell that to Coach Barnes and the roster filled with fresh, competitive, and driven faces. Someone tell that to a group of players who set out this summer more competitive and more determined than any group has been in Moscow for several years. Tell all of this to one of the best players in all of Idaho, junior post Gracey Meyer, who is listed as a post but has guard like handles and IQ. Tell that to the other returning post in Claire Haeder, who is an up-and-coming, hardworking post that many will know her name in no time. The inside game for Moscow hasn’t been this strong for these Bears since they finish third back in 2011-12.
Meyer and Haeder with be welcoming with open arms two talented sophomore guards who can dribble, pass, and shoot like they have been on varsity for yearsin sophomores Megan Jung and Hannah Broyles. This combination of an inside out team has everything needed to compete at the 4A level. They have more than what on paper says they do.
The meshing and understanding of each other’s strength will take a bit of time. This doesn’t worry Coach Barnes.
“The way this group is working together, how hard they are working for each other, the belief in the system, and how they are willing to sell out for each other will take this team far and allow us to be competitive this season,” states Coach Barnes.
Moscow has athletic players with length. This will allow them to take away passing lanes and disrupt and pressure opposing ball handlers. Each player needs to show accountability on every play, and Coach Barnes believes they will. The keys that will carry Moscow from a bunch of inexperienced young players to a team battling for a State berth is their hustle, effort, rebounding, and ability to stop ball penetration.
If those keys are met, defense will be creating a ton of offense this season and allow for contributions from all and balanced scoring. The belief in the Bears is that they will be unselfish and play strong together making great strides in competing against strong 5A teams on the schedule as well as in league.
Within the Moscow conference, there are only two other teams-Lakeland and Sandpoint. Defeat those two teams and be the number one seed only to have to do it all again in the District tournament. The number one seed should be on the line in the final regular season game against Sandpoint, the defending league champs. Fans should get out and watch this Bear team be more competitive and grow throughou