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Idaho City High School

School Info
Conference: 1AD1 Western Idaho Conference
Classification: 1A D1

Head Coach: Monica Cockerille

Years as Head Coach: 7th season

Previous Experience: None

Assistant Coaches:
Angel Nelson
Dirk Anderson

Team Preview

Written by: Vince Trimboli

When you speak with Idaho City girls’ basketball coach of seven-years Monica Cockerille, she recalls he first season like it was yesterday.

“We had just 9 kids (in the whole program),” said the coach who’s infectious personality literally jumped out of the phone. “It was an incredibly rough season. I had a lot of new players.”

Cockerille remembered one game the Wildcats trailed 50-0 at half in a game. But even while struggling early, the trial lawyer by trade found victory in defeat.
“We never gave up,” she said proudly. “We played with a lot of heart.”

Idaho City’s courage even drew the attention of the Idaho Statesman. The local paper did a front page spread on the team’s heart. It’s that moxy and stick-to-itiveness that drives the program several years later.

From the very first day the program’s motto – posted in the locker room – has been “Play hard, play smart, play together and have fun.”

Her motto fully installed the Wildcats are now on the rise. Last year Idaho City finished third place at Districts and just one game shy of the state tournament, losing a play-in game to Grace.

“We have progressively gotten better,” said Cockerille of her team that includes players who travel in the snow 35 miles to and from the small mountain school.

On the court, the wildcats are led by dynamic 6-foot post Margaret Anderson. The junior was Idaho City’s leading scorer, rebounder and shot blocker last year. She is the sister of former boys star and former Montana Tech star Dirk Anderson. She scored more than 20-points in a majority of games last season.

Junior guard Joy Billings, moved away and missed most of last season then came back in late January. A score first player, Billings is expected to add fire power with a full year to play.

Cockerille is also expecting big contributions from senior wing/post Brooke Secor, gritty defensive stalwart, senior point guard Tasha Niehoff, along with two fast sophomore guards Rachel Cummings and Kaylene Gallegos.

With 17 kids in program now and a ton of momentum, Cockerille believes the Wildcats can compete with Notus, Rimrock and Liberty Charter, the elite teams in 1A Western Idaho Conference.

“The kids this year said they want to go to state. So they said ‘we want to step it up a notch in practice.’ It’s fun to see especially if you know what we started with. Kudos to those kids that stuck it out with me all four of those years.”

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