SAUK RAPIDS — It was a great way to start a coaching career.
New Sauk Rapids head girls basketball coach Megan Foley was just delighted to see the players’ hard work rewarded.
Sauk Rapids opened with a 49-48 win Tuesday at Little Falls.
“I was extremely happy at the end of the game just to see how excited the girls got,” Foley said. “They celebrated like they just won the World Series.”
Foley hopes the excitement continues. The Storm played their home opener Friday night against Delano and are hoping to have their best season in 12 years.
“We are a very young team, but we have experience beyond our years,” Foley said. “They’re very coachable and they catch on to things very quickly.”
There’s the start of real nice team.
Andy Skillingstad is an athletic 6-foot post player who is headed to Mayville State in North Dakota to continue her basketball career. There also is sophomore Angela Konz, another 6-footer.
Foley points out the team’s biggest asset is its back court quickness. Sophomore Bailey Becker already is in her fourth year on the varsity. She was an all-conference selection last season.
Brooke Torvik, a junior, also has a vast amount of varsity experience. Staci Meyer, a ninth-grader, played as an eighth-grader.
There also is ninth-grader Bailey Roscoe and junior Brooklyn Harren.
Foley replaces Joey Waters, whose teaching contract wasn’t renewed. Waters coached the Storm for two seasons. The 5-11 Central Lakes Conference record last season was the team’s best since 2004, when the Storm went 8-8 in the conference on the way to a state tournament berth.
Since then, times have been tough. Foley is the fifth coach to guide the program since 2003-04. If you’re keeping score at home, that’s Travis Brown, Nick Klug, Chuck Thompson, Waters and now Foley.
Foley plans to stay around for a while, saying leading a high school program is her career goal.
She was hired at the end of the last school year after a nice run as an assistant coach at St. Cloud Tech, her alma mater. Foley is a 2005 Tech graduate who went to play at St. Cloud State.
Her brother Andy Foley is playing basketball at SCSU.
She graduated in 2010 with a teaching degree and is a third-grade teacher in the Sauk Rapids-Rice School District. The move to Sauk Rapids was a natural.
Her goal is teach and coach in the current combination.
“I get my fix of little ones in the day and older ones at night,” she said.
She spent the summer working with the current team and sees the potential. The Little Falls game was a start.
“It was great to see everybody on their feet (on the bench), really into it,” Foley said. “It wasn’t just the players on the floor.
“Everybody was up. Everybody was working together for the same goal. It was nice to see.”
This is the opinion of Times prep sports coordinator Tom Elliott. Contact him at 259-3661 or at email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter @sctimestom. Participate in his live web chat at noon Thursday at sctimes.com and listen to the Central MInnesota Prep Sports webcast Thursdays.