Rockers takes over Liberty North girls basketball program

Liberty North’s Jayme Jackson moves toward the basket in a game last season. Jackson, a Pittsburg State signee, is one of four returning starters for this year’s squad, which is led by first-year head coach Brian Rockers.

LIBERTY — Brian Rockers is once against a girls varsity basketball coach.

Rockers, the Park Hill girls head coach from 2000 to 2010, is now in charge of the Liberty North Eagles after spending a combined seven years as an assistant for the Park Hill boys and girls programs.

Rockers, however, is familiar with the Eagles as he spent the last five years on the Liberty North football coaching staff.

“We are excited for the season, and I am excited to be a part of the Liberty North women’s basketball program,” he said. “We have a solid group of girls that come back this year with a lot of experience. We are looking for some girls to step up and give us some depth at the varsity level.”

Rockers, who takes over for Saree Morley, will have an experienced group to work with in his first year. Four starters return.

Seniors Jayme Jackson and Gabby Burns averaged eight and five points per game, respectively, last season. Jackson is a Pittsburg State signee.

Juniors Emma Perry and Maddie Niemeier and sophomore Rachel Spainhour also return with varsity experience.

“We are working hard at practice installing new offense and defense philosophies, and the girls are doing a good job of picking these new items up,” the coach said.

Newcomers to the program are senior Brae Cowan, juniors Julia Wilburn and Lexy Anderson and sophomore Katie Chester.

The Eagles finished the 2018-19 season with a 15-12 record, falling in the district semifinals. It was the program’s first winning season since the 2012-13 campaign.

“We have our work cut out for us,” Rockers said. “We play in a very talented and competitive conference, and our district will be one of the toughest in the state.”

Sports Editor Adam Burns can be reached at adam.burns@mycouriertribune.com or 389-6643.

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