After a disappointing 2011-12 season when the Long County High School girls basketball didn’t win a game, they have a new head coach.
Kayla Hires, who was the varsity assistant coach last season, assumes the helm. And she says she expects her team to work hard and play to their abilities.
“We have a good mix of athletes that work hard and love the game. The girls are committed to our goals. They are inexperienced, but they are dedicated. And with a lot of hard work, a lot of discipline, and a little luck I think these girls may surprise spectators by the end of this season,” Hires said.
She said she will depend on three seniors to set the example for the rest of the team. They will be imperative to success.
“Mikayla Lovette and Derissa Crawford will be returning as my two inside players. Raven Rose is also a returning starter. These three girls will play a crucial role this season in leadership,” Hires said.
The coach said she also has freshmen Caitlin Wingate and Kyana Calhoun joining the team. They will see a lot of time on the court. Both are familiar with the game, and that they have been getting in a lot of practice.
Hires also said retuning players Shavonta Turner and Kicha May worked hard during the off season to improve. She will be looking for them to step-it-up with their defensive play.
Hires said her team doesn’t have much depth, but the players are showing a lot of hustle in practice.
“We are not very deep and not very experienced, however this group of girls will do something that is nearly impossible to teach, and that’s hustle,” Hires said.
According to the coach, the early part of the season will be important for players to get experience and learn each others’ strengths. But she said she expects to be competitive in all games.
“No matter who we play, our girls will have to be full throttle for 32 minutes,” the coach said.
The Lady Tide kick off the season on Nov. 24 in Jesup agains 3A-AAAA Wayne County.