The Homer Mariners Girls Basketball season starts later this month, and Homer News caught up with Head Coach Chad Felice to get a sense of what we ought to look forward to.
Felice said that this season the message to his players is the same one he’s given during all of his eight years as coach: playing together.
The goal for the Mariners is “getting everyone to play together and to play for each other … we live in such a ‘me’ dominant world these days that sometimes it’s hard to get high school students to realize you don’t have to score all the points to help your team win,” wrote Felice via email.
He says that plays like rebounding, defending, setting screens and general high intensity effort are all ways a player can benefit the team without necessarily getting the glory of scoring.
“I tell my girls all the time when they have an off scoring night, but do a lot of the little things to help the team, and they are nervous that someone might say something to them about their scoring night, that if the person really truly understands the game of basketball that they will know that you had a really good game,” Felice wrote.
However, Felice said that the task of teaching this lesson to his players is a tough one, and one that a lot of high school coaches have to face these days.
Felice is ready to face these challenges, and others, with his players this upcoming season. He says that both the players and the staff have to work together in finding solutions to the puzzles which arise over a season.
“The evolution of a team in high school athletics is as much of the coach being able to adapt to the players as it is the players being able to do what the coach wants of them,” he wrote.
One of Felice’s biggest expectations is hard work.
“This season like every other season we expect to work hard every game, and be competitive every game,” he wrote. With this effort, and a willingness to learn, Felice is hopeful for the team’s prospects at the pinnacle tournaments of the season.
“As long as we keep improving every game and learning every game, we should be able to put ourselves in a good spot for the region tournament,” Felice said.
Additionally, Felice highlighted a few athletes who have been putting in dedicated work over the off-season both at open gym and weight lifting sessions.
Minadora Reutov, Lilli Mae Kuhn, Lawson Alexson-Walls,and Emily Owens are all players who have hardly missed a session, according to Felice, and are exciting for the program this upcoming 2022/2023 season.
Overall, the mood is positive as the Lady Mariners basketball team prepares to start their season.
“I feel pretty good about the season, as long as we play together, work hard every game and practice, keep improving every week, and don’t get caught up in the ‘me’ mentality we will put ourselves in good shape come March at the Region tournament,” said Felice.
The Mariners will kick of their season vs. Redington Jr/Sr High School at 6 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 16 at the Homer High School Alice Witte Gymnasium.
Other home games this season are against the following opposition:
Nome-beltz High School at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 17.
Kenai Central High School at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 17.
Seward High School at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21.
Grace Christian High School at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 31.
Nikiski High School at 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3.
Soldotna High School at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 4.
Homer Winter Carnival on Thursday, Feb. 9 through Saturday, Feb. 11.
Houston High School at 6 p.m. on Friday, March 3.