The winter sports season officially tips off tonight when the Iowa Mennonite School girls basketball team hosts Lynnville-Sully in a non-conference contest.

IMS is coming off of a 5-17 campaign a year ago that included two tight, road playoff wins. IMS was led by Suzanna Yoder last year who lit up scoreboards all season long. She led the state of Iowa in scoring in class 1A posting 489 total points, working out to a 22 point per game average. IMS will look to fill holes left by senior starters Alyssa Hershberger, Payton Hart, and Avery Blauvelt. To go along with Yoder, IMS returns Yani Gutierrez who was the teams threat from beyond the arc, spending most of the season ranked in the top 10 in 1A in three point percentage.

Lynnville-Sully comes into the game ranked No. 10 in the state in class 1A in the official preseason poll from the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union. The Hawks were 18-7 last year and 10-6 in the South Iowa Cedar League. They were led by Carson Fisk who finished with 14 point per game average during her junior year, sixth best in the South Iowa Cedar League. Fisk was also the leading rebounder for the Hawks, pulling in 181 boards, good for fifth in the league. Lynnville-Sully will be looking to replace Carmyn Russell the team’s assist leader from last year. She was seventh in the SICL with 65 helpers. This week IMS head coach Kari Huesinkveld talked about what she wants to see from her team in the season opener. “I want to see us come out and defend well. To me defense is all about effort. If we come out and set the tone right away, that’s what I want to see first. Everything else falls into place from there. I want to see us make good decisions with the ball. It might be sloppy at times, but this group has the ability to make good decisions.”

You can hear all of the action live tonight between IMS and Lynnville-Sully on AM 1380, FM 102.5 and with Brandon Shanahan and Noah Hughes on the call. The Washington HyVee pregame show starts at 6:30 this evening.