The cold weather basketball season is still months away, but the hot weather season just concluded.
And the efforts of the Lady Red Raider girls’ basketball team during summer basketball competition have Madison County coach Dan Lampe and his staff eager to see what’s in store for 2011-12 on the hardwood.
“Our theme for the year was attitude and effort; we attained both of them and along the way we played pretty good basketball, especially for how young we are at times on the court,” said Lampe. “The coaching staff is really looking forward to the end of October to get started.”
Lampe said the girls’ team opened the summer with 10 practices over a two-and-a-half week stretch.
“During this time our goal as a coaching staff was to keep everything simple and to focus on what was important,” said Lampe. “We worked almost exclusively on fundamentals, both defensively and offensively. By the end of the 10 practices, you could see improvement in older players. However the younger players really improved fundamentally.”
The girls played three games during that time, winning them all. Then they traveled to the College of Charleston for a three-day camp.
“During this camp we played in the highest division,” said Lampe. “We played great against the better opponents and then not as good against the ‘easier’ opponents. I feel a lot of this was just lack of focus because you play so many games all condensed into three days. We wound up right at .500 for the camp.”
Lampe said that winning and losing wasn’t as important as building cohesion as a team.
“As a coaching staff you want to play well at camp, but the best thing that came from camp was that we left for camp as a group, we came back as a team,” said Lampe. “We stayed up into the late hours — might account for our up and down play – playing ‘caps’ a camp derivation of the game ‘spoons’ that we have played the last few years now at camps. This year Molly Glaze was our ‘caps’ champ.”
The Lady Raiders then played in the Hart County camp, where they won all but one game. They then closed out summer action at the Jefferson camp, where they had the highlight of their summer, beating perennial power Buford by seven points.
Lampe cited numerous positives about the girls’ play. Here’s what he had to say about his players’ summer performances:
•Molly Glaze: “Really stepped up her complete game; she was our defensive stopper all summer, she took on a UNC verbally committed point guard and outplayed her at the College of Charleston. She stole the ball repeatedly from her, while scoring consistently from both beyond the arc and with penetration moves. The College of Charleston coach felt that Molly was in the top three players at the camp. Considering that there were two girls going to UNC and one going to South Carolina, that was high praise.”
•Lele Sorrells: “She is our energy player. She can post up. She can play on the wing. She is ultra aggressive on defense and on the offensive boards, and when she ran the court, there are not many that stayed with her this summer.”
•Elise Coberly. “She has transformed into an offensive threat that can both hit 3 pointers (she hit seven against Buford in the win), but also has added finishing in the paint as well when people overplay her outside game.”
•Nekeia Brown: “Showed us that she can dominate physically in the paint, when she went to the boards or when she posted up strong there was nobody all summer that could stop her.”
•Macy Rutledge: “She worked extremely hard all summer. She shot more practice 3s than almost everybody else combined, during a one week span. She came in every day before practice and shot for two hours on the gun..this really paid dividends over the summer with her 3 ball.”
•Emmaleigh Fouche: “Is moving into her older sister’s position as point guard. As the season went on you could really see her maturation as a player, she really brings speed and athleticism!”
•Mylane Rutledge: “Also played point, as her offensive game is evolving, her defensive game has arrived. She can really turn up the ball pressure on a dribbler.”
•Kiara Sorrells: “She brings a strong physical presence onto the court that supplements her 3 ball, she has a great 3 ball. However, when the game turns ‘physical,’ Kiarra doesn’t shy away from it.”
•Ayesha Echols: “When her shot is on, it doesnt miss! When she gets rolling, nothing can stop her from scoring.”
•Samiah Bush: “She is a post player that has a big frame, soft hands and light feet, she has so much untapped ability!”
•Mya Moss: “She is a reshman, with a ton of ability. She could be one of the fastest on the team. She has great athleticism, and plays with a lot of heart. She blocks a lot of shots and will definitely help this coming year as she did this summer.”
•Haley Gordon: “She is a freshman that doesn’t play like one. She is not in the least bit intimidated by older players. She plays extremely hard and just has a sense for the game, both offensively and defensively. She will also will help us a lot this coming year!”