Timberlake High School
Conference: 3A Intermountain League
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Head Coach: Matthew Miller
Years as Head Coach: 12th Season
Previous Experience: 4 years at Potlatch HS (1 varsity/3 JV)
Record Last Year: 23-1
State Titles: 2016
Allison Kirby, PG, 12
Keelie Lawler, G, 12
Jacquelyn Mallet, G, 12
Glori Cheevers, F, 12
Shelby Starr, G, 11
Lilly Kelley, G, 11
Kaylee Jezek, F, 11
McKeeley Tonkin, G, 10
Returning Players with Honors:
Allison Kirby - 3A State Player of the year, conference co-mvp
Keelie Lawler - 1st Team all-state, conference co-mvp
Shelby Starr - all conference team
McKeeley Tonkin – all conference team
Written by: Brandon McIntosh
Back in 2014-15 and 2015-16, Coach Matthew Miller (entering his 12th year as the head coach) made it the big game, the 3A State championship, and came up short both times. Last season, the Tigers would be right back in that same game, this time winning the State Title with a 23-1 record. Three straight trips to the title game, but feeling like they are just getting started.
Coach Miller and his squad will be hitting the hardwood with one goal on their mind- to get back to the State Championship and win back-to-back titles. Having a target doesn’t seem to bother the Tigers who went out and scheduled one of the toughest at the 3A level. They have scheduled 5A opponents like Lewiston and Post Falls, 4A challengers in Sandpoint, Lakeland, and Moscow, and not to mention 1A D1 powerhouse Lapwai and a very tough Washington team in Gonzaga Prep. This team will be well tested and ready to make another run for the league title, as well as the State Tournament.
Coach Miller is strong with his feeling that he is “excited to watch this team reach maximum potential”.
Why shouldn’t they? They are returning 8 players back to the varsity including the 3A State Player of the Year and Conference co-MVP in Allison Kirby, 1st Team All-State and Conference co-MVP in Keelie Lawler, and All-Conference selections in Shelby Starr and McKeeley Tonklin. This solid core of upper-classmen is primed and ready to do repeat everything.
Where everything starts for the Tigers is with their defensive speed and quickness that is unlike any other. With this approach of creating havoc and turnovers, the strength on the offensive side is scoring easy buckets in transition and having such talented and prepared guards. The areas the Tigers will be working to improve at this season is more analytical. The Tigers must improve their points per possessions, while reducing their opponents.
The excitement at every game this season will be at high levels and every opponent will be giving their best effort to be that team to stop the Tigers. Maybe none more than Priest River as they have a rivalry game known as the “Battle of the Buck”.
Watch out for the Timberlake Tigers again this year as they are in the hunt for their fourth straight State Championship appearance and back-to-back titles.