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Now in its 19th year, the Metro Stars out of Minnesota have a proud tradition that is being carried on today by a legacy.
Jamie Broback Waldo played for the Metro Stars in the organization’s second year, and after a playing career at Minnesota she returned to the Metro Stars as a coach and board member.
“I think the difference with our program is that we really have a family feel,” Waldo said. “We have seven teams, with one team at each age level. If you play for us, you are on our ‘top team.’ We’re not one of those programs that has hundreds of kids.
“The other thing is that I really believe we have the top coaches in the state. That’s huge, because it’s all about coaching. We really value our coaches in this organization.”
Those coaches will be tested this spring at the 2015 Deep South Classic, which will be played in Raleigh, NC on April 24-26. The Deep South Classic, which annually features the nation’s top travel programs, will once again have the entire tournament in one facility — the tremendous Raleigh Convention Center.
The Metro Stars will be powered this summer by a pair of talented post players. Annika Jank (2017, 6-3) is a stretch four player, while Bailey Helgren (2017, 6-5) is a center who is rated as the No. 87 recruit in the class by the All Star Girls Report.
“Annika is a left-handed athlete who is the total package,” Waldo said. “She moves well and she can shoot it. I think the biggest transition from high school to college is adjusting to the speed of the game, but Annika moves well and she has good lateral quickness. I think Bailey is still growing, so she may be 6-6 now. She plays outstanding defense, and she good hands and vision, and she just understands how to play the game.”
“Jank is an athletic with skills. She is an aggressive player inside, and she can step out beyond the arc,” added ASGR analyst Bret McCormick. “A low post player with good footwork and the ability to score inside. She is working on extending her range out to the arc.”
The Metro Stars also expect big contributions this summer from Molly Smith (2016, 6-2, F) and the perimeter trio of Mackenzie Barta (2016, 5-9), Evelyn Knox (2016, 5-10) and Kitri Zezza (2016, 5-8).
“Molly is a player who can do it all, and she has a nice perimeter shot,” Waldo said. “Mackenzie is a great shooter. Her dad is the trainer for the (WNBA) Lynx, so she has been around the game and knows the game. Evelyn is a long athlete who is a traditional point guard, but she can shoot the three. Kitri is a tough, scrappy player who plays good defense and does all the little things.”