Sanchez seeing improvements

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Since taking over as the head coach of the Eureka Springs Lady Highlander basketball team in June, Ryan Sanchez has seen everyone improve.

"We have been getting more and more girls back," Sanchez said. "I know that a lot of them have been on vacation and what not, but we are starting to get them acclimated and implement some of the drills that we are going to do during the year. Just getting their feet wet. That way when school starts next week, it's not all foreign to them."

Sanchez said he has been working on building good team chemistry throughout the summer.

"Our behavior is priority number one," Sanchez said. "How we carry ourselves as a team is going to pay dividends as we try to implement more stuff. If we have a desire to learn and be passionate about what we are doing, then from there it can only get better. We can't build on a weak foundation."

On the court, Sanchez has been wanting his team to become better communicators.

"I want the players to lead," Sanchez said. "I want them to be the leaders. I can do all the hoop-la and the running, but it's going to be on them and they are doing a great job of it. They have grown so much in a short time."

As an example of that growth, Sanchez said he starts each practice with agility drills and has seen players grow leaps and bounds.

"I had a seventh grader, who on the first day, would lose the ball every other rung on the ladder," Sanchez said. "By the third week, she was flying through them."

The senior high team returns all five starters from a year ago. They are also all juniors and have been playing together for a long time.

"When I was a senior here, Coach Green was starting to work them out in sixth grade," Sanchez said. "I remember she was coming in after school with them and they would work out two hours in the offseason. Just from that, I can only thank her so much because that paid dividends."

Eureka Springs' season opens up with a red and white game on Friday, Oct. 6, at Highlander Arena.

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