Herndon (23-4) reached the regional quarterfinals last year, but the Hornets return just two players. South Lakes has four players back as it bids to recapture the grip it had on the district title from 1984-86. Herndon

The Hornets' strength will lie in the backcourt where 5-foot-3 senior point guard Anita Bailey returns and transfer Amy Nelson (a 5-7 senior) fills the shooting guard spot. Nykki Moody (5-7) brings back her eight points a game at small forward, but no other frontcourt players return.

Neither Bailey or Moody started, though they did play active roles. The Hornets will miss center Kelli Gilmore's presence on the boards. Coach Laura Beaver will try to use her team's quickness with pressure defenses, taking the onus off a small, inexperienced front line. Langley

Four players return from last year's 16-10 club that reached the regional quarterfinals. Most important of the group is junior point guard Allegra Milholland (5-10), whose aggressive defense ignites Langley's transition game.

Katie Ryal teams with Milholland in the backcourt while Kelly Keranen (5-8) and Laura Degnon (a 5-9 junior) return at forward. A pair of freshman centers, Jean Klepczynski (5-11) and Kristina Gillespie (6-0) could help Langley out a great deal. If either can team up with Degnon in the post area, the Saxons will contend for the district title. Madison

The Warhawks (16-10) surprised many last year with a second-place finish. This year the Warhawks return three starters, and will catch nobody off guard.

Guards Kerry Womack (5-6, 10 points) and Cindy Ritter are back, along with forward Katie Gaertner (5-11, seven points). Two players graduated taking 25 points a game with them, but Gaertner came on at the end of last season, and two newcomers are cause for optimism.

Kendra Gahagan (6-0, junior) and Jackie Freeman (5-7, freshman) will both start. The Warhawks will play tough man-to-man defense and, with better rebounding than a year ago, contend for the district title. Marshall

Leading scorer Cecilia Terrasa (16 points, six rebounds per game) returns to key the Statesmen (10-12).

The senior guard teamed up with four-year starting point guard Maureen McGrath (now graduated) and forward Loan McIntosh (11 points, seven rebounds) to give opponents three scoring threats to worry about. McIntosh, a 5-9 senior returns at a wing spot along with Terrasa. Junior Jenny Wiley (a 5-9 junior) will take over at point guard.

Coach Lisa Schlesinger would like to develop an inside scoring threat. But it is more likely that the backcourt carries the team with a pressing defense that tries to avoid the halfcourt game. McLean

The Highlanders (13-9) lost a big chunk of scoring due to the graduation of all-region center Mo Wolthuis (21 points, 14 rebounds). Three other seniors graduated from last year's club, but Coach Fred Priester is cautiously optimistic.

The reason for his optimism is another tall team (nine will be 5-9 or taller), including a pair of part-time starters from a year ago. Junior Susan South (6-0) and senior Sheila O'Brien (5-10) are back, and they will be joined by a transfer from Alabama, 5-10 junior Mary Chaney.

The top two scorers of last year's 14-6 junior varsity also join the team. McLean lost 48 points offensively due to graduation -- developing players offensively will be a top priority. South Lakes

Last season the Seahawks (13-11) failed to win the district title for the first time in three years. But with star guard Terri Bradley (5-6) back for her fourth varsity season and three other returning players, South Lakes is a favorite to regain the crown.

Bradley (19 points, 11 rebounds, four assists) was the only area player to participate in the Olympic Festival last summer. Coach Jill English will try to get Bradley and returning guards, Kitty Painter (5-8, nine points) and Jill Coshland (5-7, six points), open for the three-point shot.

Though the backcourt is the team's strength, Carla Casey (a 6-1 junior, five points) and sophomore Kelly Beard (5-10) could be the key to the team's success. If either proves to be an inside threat, the Seahawks will be among the top teams in the region. Washington-Lee

The Generals (2-18) return four seniors and a sophomore from last year's squad, but how much the team can improve remains to be seen. Leading scorer Tanya Bonham (5-9, 11 points) and Lea Poldiak (5-9) are back for a third year.

Two other seniors return, but this team is still rebuilding. Freshman center Anissa Dickerson and sophomore guard Lisa D'Ambrosio are the team's future.Yorktown

The Patriots (7-13) return four solid players from last year's squad, will miss Stephanie Blesch's 18 points a game. Three front liners return, but Yorktown will need help in the backcourt.

Senior center Kim Moore (four points, six rebounds), junior forward Darnelia Hunter (13 points, nine rebounds) and Patti Gavin give the Patriots an experienced front line. Point guard Didi Salmon (5-5) returns, but some younger players will have to come through in the backcourt.