Rebuilding year for Lady Hyaks with new head coach

Dec. 2 home opener

By Scott D. Johnston

With 5’ 9” forward Mariah Vogler the only returning senior, the North Beach High School Lady Hyaks basketball team still hopes to surprise a few foes during what is admittedly a rebuilding season. They open the 2017-18 campaign with a girls/boys doubleheader at Forks, tipoff at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

After playing at Ocosta at 7 p.m. Thursday, they will host Chief Leschi for the Lady Hyaks’ home opener at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2.

Ron Tinnin is the new head coach, moving up after serving as a volunteer assistant last season to Larry Moore, who saw double duty as head coach of both the boys and girls varsity teams. Tinnin has been coaching high school girls basketball in Washington since 1993, with head coaching stints at several schools including Renton and Bellevue.

Moore said the Lady Hyaks are lucky to have Tinnin, “a very knowledgeable basketball guy.”

Assistant Coach Jessica Preisinger, in her third year here, said she is actually quite happy for Tinnin to take the helm. She said he “has far more experience, far more knowledge and a fiery passion for the game.” A 2003 North Beach graduate, Preisinger shares a love the game: she played four years on Lady Hyaks teams that went to the district playoffs three years in a row and won the league title twice.

This year’s squad returns only five players from the team that finished with a 15-10 record, including three district playoff games. “We’re basically rebuilding,” Tinnin said. “I’ve told the girls, everything is new, so we’re starting over. It’s going to be a little tough, but I think the kids have enough guts and enough heart to stick it out.

“The goal for this team, and for all the teams that I coach, is to be very good defensively. This team will struggle early, but we will get better as we play. I anticipate by the end of the year, people won’t want to play us,” he said.

The coaches expect a trio of returners to lead the team on both ends of the court. Junior Adelina Desamours returns as the Lady Hyaks’ primary point guard, joined in the backcourt by tough sophomore Lorin Cox. Those two and Vogler should shoulder the bulk of scoring, and spark the defense as well.

They also look for junior Jessy Garman to step up. Any team would miss the 6’ 1”

stature of her big sister, Helen, who graduated this spring. “Jessy’s not as tall as her sister, but she’s just as tough,” Tinnin said. “I would say she’s tougher than her sister,” Preisinger chuckled. “She’s got the fire,” Tinnin agreed.

“It’s going to take a while… some baby steps… but the kids are going to be fun to watch,” he said.

“They’ve worked very hard in the off-season,” studying DVDs of Coach Tinnin’s defensive system, Preisinger said. “We’ve had two years in a row we’ve gone to district, and they want to keep that going, The community needs to come out and see the hard work they’ve put in.”