KEY LOSSES: Dillon May, Isaiah Lowe
KEY RETURNERS: Isaac Meddings, Ronnie Staley Peyton Marcum, Cooper Adkins, Kaiden Hayton, Zane Adkins
The Wayne Pioneers finished last season at 6-16. But with more experience under their belt, the Pioneers look to make a big jump this season.
Ronnie Staley will Wayne’s starting point guard this season and is one of the better players at the position in the area. He will control the flow of the game for the Pioneers. Isaac Meddings will return to start at shooting guard for his junior season. Meddings is one of the most prolific 3-point shooters in West Virginia and has worked hard, putting on a lot of muscle during the offseason. Peyton Marcum will also see time in the backcourt. He’s a good shooter who should give the Pioneers another scoring option. Zane Adkins is the team’s lone senior and will give the team valuable leadership. He can also run point guard when needed.
Cooper Adkins is a tall and athletic big man who can rebound and shoot it from the outside. He’ll be looked at to share a bigger scoring role. Kaiden Hayton will start at center for Wayne. He likes to bruise and bang down low and will add a physical presence.
Colton Heck is a transfer from Spring Valley who is currently suffering from a football injury. When he returns, he’ll see some time at guard. Freshman Drew Dotson will see some minutes off the bench.
The Pioneers are hoping to take a step forward and contend for the sectional title and then possibly make it through the Regional and reach the state tournament for the first time in school history. With a determined and experienced group coming back, don’t count out the Pioneers this season.
KEY LOSSES: Cheyenne Williams
KEY RETURNERS: Brooke Adkins, Addie Adkins, Laneigh Brooks, Mikayla Stacy
The Wayne Lady Pioneers had an amazing season, finishing 24-2 while being ranked 1st in Class AAA for much of the season. Unfortunately, Wayne’s season came to a screeching halt in the opening round of the state tournament. This year, the Lady Pioneers have a loaded, versatile roster and look to contend for a state championship.
First team all-state selection Brooke Adkins returns to lead the Lady Pioneers. Adkins averaged 16 points per game last season. She’ll be joined on the wing by the team’s lone senior starter Laneigh Brooks. Brooks is a very good player in her own right and is expected to have a big year.
Second team all-stater Addie Adkins and Mikayla Stacy return to play forward. They are both long and athletic and can be called upon to score.
The biggest addition to the team is freshman Jaycelyn Sammons. So far, Sammons has fit in well with the team, and head coach Wade Williamson is high on her heading into the season. Sammons will be the point guard, although she and Brooks will swap out positions at times.
Senior Shelby Anderson comes off the bench and is expected to see a lot of playing time out on the wing. Kiya Brown is a solid defender who can come in and score around the basket. Kinley Runyon will come off the bench and provide a skilled player and solid shooter.
The ending of last year was a rough one for Wayne, but continuing to play a tough schedule while learning from last season could pay big dividends. Make no mistake about it, this is a juggernaut of a team. Look for Wayne to be among the favorites to cut down the nets at season’s end.