Summer ball ramps up
Published 5:28 pm Tuesday, June 14, 2016
With 20 games in a ten-day period, the Terry Smith era of Bainbridge High School basketball has officially started. Smith has put his team through a grueling summer schedule as he works to develop young talent and implement his system.
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“This is the most important part of the year,” Smith said. “I’m not so big on wins and losses during the summer. They don’t count anyway. My thing is I just want to see them compete. Play hard, play together as a team.”
Smith was hired to replace Rickey McCullough, who announced his retirement at the end of the 2015-16 season.
Smith brought in three assistant coaches to help him run the BHS program. His main assistant will be Devin Stowers, who coached with him last year at Peach County High School. Stowers played collegiate basketball at Savannah State.
“When you’re going somewhere you’re always going to bring someone in that understands your system,” Smith said.
That system will be designed to maximize the skill set of the team and mask their weaknesses, namely the lack of size in the interior. Smith said that they will play a fast paced style with the goal of wearing out the opponent and getting out in front of the defense.
“Were an up-tempo type team,” Smith said. “We don’t have the 6-6, 6-7, 6-8 type guys. It’s going to be hard for us to just play a half court game. One thing Bainbridge has always been known for is speed. We’re gonna use that to our advantage.”
Smith said that their goal is to make defense an “84-foot game” and turn their defense into easy offense by forcing steals and getting stops.
That new style was on full display Monday afternoon when they battled back against Crisp County with a flurry of wide open three pointers and a smothering full court press. Late game mistakes proved to be the Bearcats downfall though as they fell 49-48 to the Cougars.
The loss to Crisp County was only the third one that the Bearcats have suffered this season.
The three loses have come by a combined three points as they work to cleanup end of game scenarios.