St. Thomas More girls basketball team looks to continue success with talented squad

RAPID CITY, S.D. – The St. Thomas More girls basketball team has won six state championships over the past eight years.

This season, head coach Brandon Kandolin believes the Lady Cavaliers have a good chance at winning number seven.

St. Thomas More is coming off a 19-7 season and a sixth place finish at the State ‘A’ Basketball Tournament.

The Cavaliers have plenty of talent coming back including seniors Kaci Cooper, Skylar Sullivan, and Lizzy Elder.

St. Thomas More also picked up senior Delaney Klosterman who transferred from Rapid City Stevens.

However, the Cavaliers offense will revolve around junior forward Haleigh Timmer who averaged 21 points and  seven rebounds per game last season.

“Haleigh’s one of those all-around players that’s got great size, great length,” STM girls basketball coach Brandon Kandolin said. “The basketball knowledge that she’s got is everything that you want. And I know the other team members want to get involved and help out to alleviate any pressure off of Haleigh and I think we’ve got that. Again the experience will help alleviate any pressure that Haleigh might feel to try and overdue some things and I know the other teammates are up to that challenge.”

Brandon Kandolin is entering his 20th year as the head coach for the St. Thomas More girls basketball team.

St. Thomas More will play a tough schedule again this season with games against Watertown, Aberdeen Roncalli, West Central, Winner and Brandon valley, along with the Black Hills Conference schools.

Coach Kandolin feels that defense will play a big role in his team’s success this year.

“The ability to defend helps you stay in games and gives you any chance that you can,” Kandolin said. “That’s going to be definitely a start again this year is we have to control the defensive end.  We have to make sure that we box out and allow a team one shot if one shot. Then a lot of times our defense leads into easy baskets. So if we’re going to score, we definitely want the easy ones first.”

St. Thomas More tips off the girls basketball season on December 14 at home against Belle Fourche.

Then the Cavaliers will travel to Watertown on December 21.

Categories: High School, Sports