The past few seasons have been a steady march of improvement for the Gridley High School girls basketball team.

From a 9-15 record in 2013-14, the Bulldogs have gone 17-9 in 2014-15; 16-11 in 2015-16; and 19-6 a year ago - right on the cusp of the 20-win plateau.

Coach Becca McCray and her team hope to crack that barrier in 2017-18.

McCray is entering her fifth season coaching the Bulldog girls.

2017-18 is shaping up as a bit of a rebuilding year for Gridley, McCray said.

The Bulldogs have to replace three key players who accounted for more than 35 points per game last season: Guard Stephanie Cardenas (16.3 ppg.); guard Gina Lockhart (11.3 ppg.); and Elleana Brady-Spears (8.0 ppg.).

Brady-Spears is now playing at Yuba College.

But the Bulldogs have junior power forward-wing Maddyson Tull back for her third varsity campaign. Tull has been an impact player since breaking in as a freshman in 2015-16.

They also have Lauren Erickson back. The senior, at 5-10, will handle center duties. Erickson averaged 4.8 ppg. a year ago.

Fallon Squires, who played as a freshman but did not come out for basketball her sophomore or junior years, is back as a senior. At 6-2, Squires will be another big for the Bulldogs.

Tull's younger sister Kennedy, a freshman, will handle point guard duties.

Both Tull girls play basketball pretty much year-round, McCray said.

"We're going to be young and quick this season," McCray said.

A key for the Bulldogs will be how quickly they gel as a team, McCray said.

The Bulldogs opened the season Tuesday night at home against Marysville. They host their own tournament this weekend, from Thursday-Saturday, opening against Willows on Thursday.