The basketball season at Pickens High School for the Dragons is now officially over for , leaving us now with time to reflect on the year that was. To give us some insight on the Dragons’ 2011-2012 season, head coach Brad Steinhauer was kind enough to answer some of my questions about the season and what the Pickens fans can expect next season. Obviously missing the state tournament was not ideal, but overall how did this year’s team fare compared to your expectations going into the season?
“My expectations were very high going into this season. I thought that returning four starters from a 19-10 team would allow us to win a lot of games and compete for a region championship. I did not realize how valuable our 5th starter [Jordan Shaw] was that we lost to graduation. He was an athlete that could handle the ball and score. We missed that this season.”
Wins and losses aside, this season provided plenty of memorable plays and moments throughout. Is there anything in particular that sticks in your mind from this year’s slate of games?
“The best moment I have is when we came back from a 13 point deficit to beat Sequoyah in the last game of our Holiday Classic.”
Seven seniors played their last game as Dragons last Wednesday night. What are you going to miss the most about going to work with this group of young men day after day?
“They were a great group of young men who did right on and off the court. They had good grades and good attitudes. I hate it that we did not get back to the state tournament, but that is life. I know they will be successful in life at whatever they choose to do. They are a great group of guys.”
What do you think next year’s squad needs to work on in order to build off of the success of this team and take it to the next level?
“Next year we will be extremely inexperienced. We will only bring back one player with significant varsity minutes (Tanner Brumby). We will also lose our size. Next year’s team will have to be able to shoot from the perimeter, handle the basketball, and defend in order to be successful.”
The offseason is just a few days old now, but what are some of your early predictions and goals for the 2012-2013 season?
“We will focus on improvement from beginning of the season until the end.”