Lady Vikings visit No. 6 Marist on Friday

The young Lady Vikings continue to improve, says coach Aaron McNeill. (Photo by Cameron Jagoe/

Siuslaw girls basketball coach Aaron McNeill is both realist and optimist.

So this realistic optimist is clear eyed as he views Friday's Sky-Em League opener at Marist.

"I keep telling the girls we're undefeated in league," McNeill joked. "Guess that might be changing, but we were for quite awhile!"

The Lady Vikings are 0-13 in preleague and ranked No. 33 of 34 Class 4A teams by the Oregon School Activities Association in what has been established as a building year.

The Lady Spartans are 6-3 and No. 6 in both the OSAA rankings and the OSAAtoday coaches' poll, which was released Monday.

"Marist is probably the toughest team we will have played all season," McNeill said. "They are long, quick, physical, deep and talented.

"It will be a challenge for our girls to play a great team like Marist, but it will be beneficial for us to see a team that demonstrates where we'd like to go as a program."

Siuslaw is young, with six freshmen and three sophomores comprising nine of its 14 varsity athletes.

"We have no pressure on us playing a team like Marist," McNeill said. "All the pressure is on Marist. We just need to continue to play with effort and work on improving as a team."

Effort and improvement remain hallmarks for McNeill.

"The girls have kept their focus and continue to play hard in spite of losing," McNeill said. "This past weekend, the girls played some of their best basketball in terms of offensive execution and effort.

"This was evident on the scoreboard as well, especially the first halves of each game. I think they are seeing the progress they've made this season."

Record: 0-13 overall, 0-0 Sky-Em League
Sky-Em League
Friday, Jan. 14 — at Marist, 7:15 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 18 — at Marshfield, 7:15 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 21 — Elmira, 7:15 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 25 — at Junction City, 7:15 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 28 — Cottage Grove, 7:15 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 4 — Marist, 5:45 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 8 — Marshfield, 5:45 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 11 — at Elmira, 5:45 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 15 — Junction City, 5:45 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 18 — at Cottage Grove, 5:45 p.m.
Dec. 1
 — Bandon 47, at Siuslaw 7
Dec. 3 — at Newport 52, Siuslaw 2
Dec. 6 — at North Bend 46, Siuslaw 14
Dec. 8 — at Pleasant Hill 51, Siuslaw 10
Dec. 10 — Monroe 56, Siuslaw 19, at Harrisburg Tournament
Dec. 11 — Blanchet Catholic 36, Siuslaw 16, at Harrisburg Tournament
Dec. 14 — Newport 45, at Siuslaw 14
Dec. 17 — Sutherlin 47, Siuslaw 9, at Creswell Tournament
Dec. 18 — Monroe 39, Siuslaw 12, at Creswell Tournament
Dec. 21 — Pleasant Hill 41, at Siuslaw 12
Dec. 30 — Newport 36, Siuslaw 10, at Newport Tournament
Jan. 7 — Henley 48, Siuslaw 18, Sky-Em/Skyline Crossover, at Siuslaw 
Jan. 8 — North Valley 39, Siuslaw 19, Sky-Em/Skyline Crossover, at Siuslaw

  0 Rhianna Lane, freshman, center, 6-0
  2 Abby Riggs, freshman, guard, 5-4
  3 Cate Waggoner, sophomore, guard, 5-2 
  4 Jane Lacouture, sophomore, guard, 5-7, co-captain
  5 Jolee Erickson, freshman, guard, 5-5
11 Denali Sleeper, senior, forward, 5-7
12 Claire Lindell, freshman, guard-forward, 5-5
13 Haylee Cole, senior, guard-forward, 5-6, co-captain
14 Mya Smith, sophomore, guard, 5-3
23 Gillian Norton, junior, center, 6-0 
25 Gracie Perkins, senior, guard, 5-5
33 Macy McNeill, freshman, guard, 5-3
Coach: Aaron McNeill
Assistant: Sara Truax