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O.C. Football Team Shakes Off Adversity; Set to Play DePaul Catholic

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first_imgBy KEN WISNEFSKIOcean City’s originally scheduled Championship Game set for Friday night at Carey Field against Camden High School has been cancelled.“The only definite that I know was that I was contacted by the school (Camden) yesterday morning and was told, ‘It was too far to travel.’ I had hoped for some other options such as a neutral site. But nothing came through,” stated Ocean City Athletic Director Geoff Haines.“Plain and simple – they (Camden) chose not to play. They were not willing to meet us at least part of the way and so we had to move on,” said Ocean City Head Coach Kevin Smith.And move on, they did. Ocean City is now set to play perennial North Jersey powerhouse DePaul Catholic, from Wayne, N.J., this Friday night at 6 p.m. at Carey Field.“It will be a huge step up in competition but we felt the challenge was worth it to get our seniors one last home game and a final opportunity (one they earned!) to play in front of their families,” Smith stated. “A big thank you to our athletic director, Geoff Haines, for working hard yesterday to try to make the Camden game happen and for helping us with DePaul. I can assure you, Geoff did everything in his power to try to make it work with Camden.”Coach Kevin SmithOcean City enters the game undefeated on the season at 6-0, while DePaul Catholic comes to town with a 2-2 record.Joe Schneider, father of standout Senior Jake Schneider, was asked about his feelings from parent’s perspective.He said, “The Ocean City football program has had an unbelievable resurgence the last few years. This team earned a home playoff game. It is unfortunate that Camden cannot make the trip, but we are now getting the opportunity to play a higher quality opponent at home. Kudos to AD Haines, Coach Smith and the entire coaching staff for their leadership through this difficult season. I am proud to be a supporter of this historic 2020 team.”Due to ongoing crowd restrictions, the game can be seen via YouTube at  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvxvREf1YCwGood luck to the Ocean City football team from the staff here at the OCNJDaily! The 2020 OCHS Varsity Football Team and Coaching Staff (Photo credit: Pam Leypoldt’s Facebook page.)last_img read more

Romanian couple tests positive for COVID-19 in Bali

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first_imgA Romanian couple on holiday in Bali tested positive for COVID-19. Officials report the man and woman are in stable condition after 10 days of being treated in isolation.“I can confirm that we have received the laboratory test results of two foreigners who have been treated for 10 days at Tabanan General Hospital and the result is positive,” the head of the Tabanan Health Agency, Nyoman Suratmika, said on Monday.“Both patients are in stable condition. However, they will remain in isolation until their tests show negative,” he added.Suratmika said the male patient had sought medical treatment first when he began feeling sick. He went to a private hospital in Badung regency before eventually being taken to the Tabanan hospital.“He had a fever, cough and difficulty breathing [upon his arrival at the Tabanan hospital],” he added.As he was showing COVID-19-like symptoms, the hospital decided to treat him in an isolation room, said Suratmika.“After [he stayed for] two days at the Tabanan hospital, his wife began to show similar symptoms, so we also put her in isolation,” he added.Suratmika said after the couple received medical treatment for 10 days, their health started to improve.“We’re grateful to find that the two patients are now in better condition, but since they are still COVID-19-positive we’re still waiting for full tests.“Once they are declared negative for COVID-19, they are allowed to leave [the hospital],” said Suratmika.COVID-19 has so far claimed the life of two foreigners, who were believed to be a British woman and a French man, in Bali. At the moment, an Indonesian man is being treated in a hospital in Bali for COVID-19. With the Romanian couple, the resort island has recorded five COVID-19 cases, with two fatalities, so far.Topics :last_img read more

Lessons learned from my first year coaching youth basketball

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first_imgMORE: SN’s latest March Madness projectionsI was 15 minutes into my first head-coaching experience, and in way over my head. How could that happen? After all, I’d had great mentors growing up and have spent my entire adult life covering successful college football and basketball coaches.Seriously, how hard could it be?It’s hard. The first step is admitting that. We live in Pickerington, Ohio, a hotbed for NFL and college basketball talent. All those stereotypes about youth sports — parents, coaches and, of course, the scoreboard — are part of the thin line between competitiveness and obsession. And they’re real.You learn from it, especially in those areas that occasionally go viral when it gets out of hand. I’m no expert after one season as a head coach, but here’s what I learned from my first season that’s worth sharing for those who want to coach.ScoreboardOur first- and second-grade basketball leagues do not keep score. It’s a good idea in practice, but it’s tough to execute every week.The kids know the score. The parents know the score. And yes, the coaches know the score. You can only tell kids “Don’t worry about the score” so many times, but if you don’t believe it, then how will they?I always tried to re-center it this way. Think about it.If you played youth, junior high or high school sports, how many scores of individual games do you remember that you played in? I remember two or three, tops.Everybody remembers wins and losses. Few people remember the actual score.Our team played well in some games and we ran into some teams where I’d rather not know what the final score was anyway. The ” losses” would eat at me more than my players, especially early in the season. That’s part of being being a competitor, but it can have a negative effect on the kids if you cannot get past that.Kids can sense frustration, and whenever this happened I’d think of Alabama coach Nick Saban. How many eyes roll every time he talks about an “internal scoreboard” after the Crimson Tide beats somebody by 50?Well, he’s the most successful college football coach of all time, and I’m not sure he knows that it works the other way, too.You can “win” and get worse. You can get “beat” and get better. The second I learned that, our team improved.Parents and coachesThe parents on our team included three principals, three teachers and a former coach. I could take the stance that “This is my team!” and create friction (which I’ve heard works when dealing with hover parents), or I could keep the parents involved.In my experience, the latter option was better.My wife ran the clock and made a few gift bags for the kids at Christmas (don’t tell the NCAA). Our assistant is a principal and a coach’s son. He was amazing. One parent told me he guarded Jim Jackson in high school. You can bet we had him help with rebounding drills in the next practice. If anybody has tips on how to get second-graders to rebound better, then send them my way.MORE: Looking at college basketball’s (un)luckiest teamsAny contribution should be welcome. One father, a track coach, said he knew nothing about basketball. It didn’t matter, because he knew kids. One of the mothers showed her kid how to fight over top of the screen.Another father, the one who had high school coaching experience, ended up on our bench. I wanted him there, too. He drew up sideline plays on timeouts. I didn’t even watch because I knew they’d work.Everybody wants their kid to succeed. So why not facilitate that with other parents?The same goes for the other coaches in the league. Instead of being combative, work with —  not against — the other coaches. Which leads to the next point:RefsThere’s a ref shortage at the high school level in the state of Ohio, and it’s easy to see why. Referees get blamed for everything, and it’s easy to go after them.I’m guilty of that. For example, double teams are illegal in our league, and in one game the referee didn’t call a player for sliding off his man and blocking our shots. I grew progressively angry — if you’ve seen the “Angry Bender” series, you know where that can lead.”Hey, can you call the double team?””Call … the … double … team!””Call the DOUBLE TEAM! Call the … “Picture that Will Ferrell skit where he tells the kid to get off the shed. Before I almost blurted out one of those magic words, however, that former coach told me, “You’re not going to get that call so you might as well stop. You’re only going to make him even more mad.”He was right. It was the best lesson ever. I stopped worrying about the double team, which they never called anyway, and coached the kids — who adjusted. After all, you can double team at the higher levels.If you spend half the game harping on officiating, the kids will use it as an excuse for their performance when something goes wrong.Don’t blame the refs. Instead, work with the refs (we had some good ones) and coach your players. Which leads to the next point. …Coaching your kidMy son, Grant, is my clone. We look alike. We act alike. We watch sports the same way. He has filled out better March Madness brackets than me the past three years. He would have won in 2017 if not for Luke Maye, and in 2018 if not for Donte DiVincenzo.Still, the line between father and coach is never easy to side-step around. Early in the season I was probably too demanding on Grant: I’d correct him more than the other kids. I knew he could take it, but it doesn’t make it right. I went out of my way to make sure I wasn’t showing some favoritism.That was the wrong approach, at least for Grant. In the second half of the season, I treated him the same as the other kids: “Go make shots. Go compete. Go have fun.” He was harder on himself than I ever was, and that’s the thing we’ll continue to work on together.MORE: Five storylines to dominate the end of the college basketball seasonWe also did things to make it special for us, too. Every Friday, we’d watch a basketball “30 for 30.” He learned more about the “Bad Boys” Pistons and the N.C. State national championship team. He knows who Lorenzo Charles is. That’s important to me.I tried to keep him off the scoreboard app a little more, too.Hey, I want to have the better bracket this year.The playersThere are so many different parenting philosophies when it comes to sports. Honestly, it’s hard to keep up. So I tried to talk to as many parents as possible, either before or after practice, to make sure the kids were handing the intensity. Try doing that in front of a bunch of teachers and principals: the ones who know how to do the best every day. It was intimidating.There were moments where the parents, coaches, kids and refs in our league weren’t at their best, especially when it comes to a nonexistent scoreboard.There were challenges for our team. We didn’t have all 10 of our players at the end of the season. One of our first-timers broke his ankle and couldn’t finish — but that kid showed up to cheer on his teammates the rest of the year. That was awesome.So were some of the kids across the league. Grant’s friends and some of his former teammates were scattered on the other teams. Those games were, naturally, the most competitive. I love watching those kids just as much. You want to see as many kids play next year as a possible. Pickerington has that figured out, even at this age.I asked one of our players who his favorite NBA player was.He said, “I don’t have a favorite player because I have a hoop in my driveway.”Greatest response ever. If that kid leads a 5-12 upset in the NCAA Tournament someday, I won’t be the least bit surprised. I’ll have it penciled in on my bracket.The best part? The kids got better throughout the season. In the last game, two kids who hadn’t scored a basket all season scored in the final minutes. One of the kids flexed and screamed (you have to let that go every once in a while). They were having fun, which is the thing you hear people say they want most but have trouble living out. That goes for the coaches, too.I’ll remember that last quarter a lot longer than the score in any of those games, that’s for sure. That was the end of the season. Sort of.On Monday night, Grant and I were watching Virginia and Syracuse. Kyle Guy was drilling a bunch of 3-pointers, and that’s when Grant looked at the clock. It was about that time. The first Monday evening practice was a challenge.You don’t know until you try to get second-graders to hold the basketball on a school night in the latest practice window available. The first few shots went in every possible direction. A few went in. A few more bounced off the rim. A few even missed the backboard. One nearly knocked my glasses off, and I wasn’t even facing in the direction of the shot. “Dad, I miss practice.””Yeah, I do too.”I wouldn’t have said that four months ago, but now I can’t wait for next year to learn some more.last_img read more