Monday, June 22, 2015

2015 University of Memphis - Melissa McFerrin Team Camp Thoughts

I really enjoyed the environment at the Team Camp. It was great competition. I got to speak to a lot of parents and players. I was introduced to new players. I even learned that one of my former players from the very first AAU team I coached is now coaching. That was 2003.  Boy does time fly. 

I felt like a proud auntie watching the MHEA team play... Through the years, several of the players have participated in my trainings sessions, Fall Exposure League and Pre-Season Show Off camp. It is just unbelievable to see how they are getting taller and growing as players. I couldn't do anything but smile as I watched them play. Collierville is another team of players that I've been keeping an eye on for a couple of years because of their participation in my events. Both teams are very young, yet talented.

Whitehaven lost a lot of talent and experience due to graduation. I see senior Brianna Shaw and junior Ariel Williams carrying much of the load this year. However, they will have a good supporting cast. Brianna does a lot of her damage in the paint with her athleticism. Ariel has no fear. She plays with a chip on her shoulder. She will score in any way she pleases whether its getting to the rack or pulling up for the 3. I always have to do a double take when I see sophomore Shyma Ward. She looks just like her mom former Northside standout Marquita Mackey and her game is similar -- aggressive rebounder and scorer in the post.

I always enjoy the conversations I have with Coach Warren, who is back at White Station now as the head coach after one year as the head coach at Cordova. When I saw that his starting five included 3 players at least 5'10ish and up, it reminded me of his Manassas days. He kept a team loaded with long and athletic players.  Teams better be ready to run when they play White Station. Once they get a rebound or steal, they are looking to advance the ball up the court quickly. I was happy to see junior Tamia Jones on the court. The 5'10ish slasher had to sit out last year due to transferring from Lausanne. She is so agile and will be doing double duty as a guard and forward. I am very impressed with Miss Allanna Black's improvement. The 6'0ish forward plays a lot with her back to the basket and her teammates feed her the ball.

Because of the addition of Tamia, 5'10ish Damiah Griffin will interchange on the perimeter and in the paint. I had to look twice when I saw her on the perimeter. Then I almost fell over when I saw her make a three point shot---WHAT! Damiah will be dangerous this year.. Her game has stretched with her on the perimeter AND she has a nice shot. During the camp, I witnessed her on back-to-back possessions perform a couple of post counter moves and knocked down the shots.. I almost ran out the gym.

Believe me, there will be something different about White Station this year. They are going to play fast. Their rotation is going to be at least 10 deep, AT LEAST. They will be aggressive, tough and scrappy with Damiah, sophomore Brittni Moore and Dejah Montgomery leading.  AND they will be blocking everything that come in the lane. 

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