Stillwater News Press

High School Sports

June 28, 2013

New Lady Pioneers' coach Stephens prepares program's future

STILLWATER, Okla. — Stillwater girls basketball coach Clay Stephens spent many years building the Frontier Lady Mustangs as state powerhouse. This week Stephens is getting his first look at the future of the Lady Pioneers’ program.

“(The talent) is pretty good. It can always be better,” Stephens said. “It’s not terrible. There’s some girls there that can play.”

The camp was divided into two sessions, second- through fifth-graders and sixth- through ninth-graders. Stephens said he wants to teach children the fundamentals but also to have fun.

“The main thing we are trying to do, is let these girls know that basketball can be fun,” Stephens said. “There’s a lot of work involved but it can be fun and we can be good together. So, let’s enjoy this time that we have to work a little bit. We can enjoy it, and down the road we can benefit from it.”

The younger kids are learning the basic fundamentals while the older group is a little more advanced. Stephens said the energy level of both groups is different as well.

“In the morning we have a more simplified basic addition of what we are doing in the afternoon,” Stephens said. “We do the same thing (in the afternoon) but there’s more to it. It’s advanced.

“(The younger kids) are eager. They’re so unorthodox. It’s kind of wild,” Stephens said. “They’re fun and I think they had a game. When you get older, you got to be cool, you don’t want to stand out.”

In the second session, the older children were doing more intense shooting drills and scrimmaged against each other. Stephens won three state championships at Frontier and hopes his campers continue to play together.

“We need to take these younger girls and make a Stillwater team,” Stephens said. “Something we can build on. That’s where we’ve lacked in the past. Our younger kids have played here and there, and not really play together much as Stillwater.”

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