Onalaska girls basketball with high expectations for 2019-20

Entire starting lineup returns for new campaign

High school basketball competition is right around the corner, and today we preview MVC runner-up Onalaska.

The Hilltoppers made it all the way to the section semifinals last year, and the whole starting roster returns this winter.

Junior Olivia Gamoke leads the backcourt after scoring 12.5 points a game last year, and twins Lexi and Kenzie Miller anchor the frontcourt.

The Miller twins are incredibly alike. Both athletes are 5-foot-10, both made 93 field goals last year, and both will play on the same D2 program next year at Newberry in South Carolina.

They say the nice weather and the school’s interest in both of them were a big sell.

“We definitely said that we weren’t a package deal, but when any school offers you and your twin sister scholarships, it’s a win-win, so we had to take it,” Kenzie Miller said.

The junior Gamoke already has several NSIC offers, so it’s a talented group across the board.

The team says they’re itching to reach State after getting so close the last few years. They just have to play to their strengths.

“Our tallest girls are like 5-foot-10 maybe, so playing fast and transitioning up and down the court is a huge factor in playing against especially taller teams,” Lexi Miller said.

“We’ve always been a fast team. We always like to run the court, we like to press and get up in people’s grill. So I think this year is like any other year. We’re going to try to have fun, try to work hard and make a big run at State.,” Gamoke said.

“We’ve got six kids, seven kids who can probably go out and get double figures every night,” head coach Shane Schmeling said. “And then defensively, last year we were 17-0 in games we gave up 60 or less. In games we gave up over 60 points, we were 0-7, so we have to get a little better defensively. We don’t have a lot of size, so we’ve got to create some problems with quickness and some pressure.”

Onalaska opens at West Salem next Tuesday.

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