HODGDON, Me. (WAGM) - The Hodgdon girls snuck into the playoffs last season after going nine and nine where they lost to Stearns in the prelims. The Hawks graduated five seniors from that team, but this year's squad has rushed out of the starting gate with six wins. Hodgdon got a taste of the playoffs last year and now they want to go further.
"I have yet to play on a Bangor court, but we did get a seat at the playoffs last year and that's a big improvement from my freshman year where we only won one game," Senior Kora Lambert said.
Kora Lambert is the lone senior on the Hodgdon Hawks and she's embraced her leadership role.
"I kind of try to just be that one that kind of picks them up, you know just try to keep them motivated and keep them upbeat," Lambert said. "Whether we're down or up by 25. I just try to keep them motivated and keep them going and the game is not done until that clock runs out."
Six of Lambert's eight teammates are underclassmen. The young Hawks are getting some serious playing time early on in the season.
"The younger kids were kind of thrown into the fire last year," Hodgdon head coach Wendell Harvey said. "I had a couple freshman who started at the end of the year so they go some experience and I've got some younger kids that are growing as we go, they're looking good, I'm very pleased with their progress."
One of those players who Coach Harvey tossed into the flames is sophomore Sabra Scott and she says the young Hawks are being held accountable by their senior leader.
"She's helped us a lot, she's great, she gets us motivated, she keeps us going, she yells at us but in a constructive way," Scott said.
Lambert motivates because she knows if the Hawks are going to get to Bangor they need the younger players to step up.
"I think they've come a long way, we do have a lot of young girls that are playing a lot of varsity minutes," Lambert said. "I think that they're improvement and their maturity has come a long way."
Coach Harvey knows the road ahead is tough.
"We have a tough schedule, you know we play Southern Aroostook, we play houlton, woodland," Harvey said. "We have expectations of trying to get a playoff spot and then we'll see what happens."