CROOKSVILLE — The Lady Ceramics are taking a new approach to the court this year with Shawn Chamberlin stepping up as head coach with a new game plan in mid for his young team.
Out of 14 girls on the roster this season, only two girls are seniors, making the 2019-20 Lady Ceramics a freshman, sophomore and junior team, according to Chamberlin.
Chamberlin is coming into the season with the plan of breaking down the basics and taking care of the basketball.
“We want to see in our scrimmages what we’ve been practicing of taking care of the basketball, having a good, solid defense and good fundamentals,” he reported.
“We focus on details and pay close attention to the little things, for both offense and defense.”
There aren’t big strides that the Lady Ceramics are reaching for at the moment, but little ones that will build up to larger ones and eventually reach a main goal.
Chamberlin said they want to build up on the little successes they had last year, not really focusing on last season though.
“I knew what I wanted to do if I ever go the chance to coach, and I’m simplifying everything,” Chamberlin stated.
“Our offense is a structured pattern offense and hopefully that will open up more down the road.”
Chamberlin already had the chance of building relationships with these players before taking the head coaching position for varsity as he coached all of these players at the junior high level.
He reported that he took the job because he already knew them and they already knew him.
“Now, I just have to get them to play at this high level,” he said.
Because of the small number of older players, there is no obvious leader for this year’s Lady Ceramics, but Chamberlin said he did not want that to change.
He said he wanted his team to be open, no separation, to who leads them on and off the court.
“Everyone is a leader and everyone has a voice,” Chamberlin said.
“It allows everyone to relax a little bit and if they want to speak, they speak.”
Seeing how beneficial it was for his girls to already have a player/coach relationship built has pushed Chamberlin to implement that on the younger players this season, as he still is coaching varsity.
He reported that he still goes down to the lower levels of middle school basketball and teaches them the things he is teaching his varsity players, implementing the same ideas and building them up as players.
“The girls get to see me and build that bond early with this,” he stated.
He is implementing the idea to his coachable and moldable varsity squad of separating the season into two different chapters, regular and post.
Chamberlin said he takes the mentality that the regular season is the first chapter where they figure everything out, then the seeding comes and that is chapter two, the second season.
“We can compete with small schools really well, which will be beneficial to us come next year when the MVL splits to big school and small school,” he said.
“This season, I don’t want them to worry about the score or look at the scoreboard, but just focus on the improvements on the court and let the score speak for itself at the end.”
“I just want them to go on the court and play hard against any competitor; whether Sheridan or John Glenn, they just need to go on the court and work.”
Athletes have the tendency to get to a comfortable state where they are fine with the result of a season, good or bad, but a comfort level is a plague for athletes, and Chamberlin knows that.
He reported that being comfortable is a nature and growing is hard, which is why some athletes won’t try to grow.
“If you aren’t challenged, you aren’t changing and I want to change these girls for the better,” Chamberlin concluded.