One Coach Moving On; Another Starts To Build Athletes

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In the March 19 Extra Points column, hope was expressed that Payson High would be able to retain first-year basketball coaches Jared Swanson and Kelly Kreig. It was written:

“Although first-year boys basketball coach Jared Swanson didn’t have the season he was hoping for, he’s being praised as a talented, young coach overflowing with potential. His counterpart, Lady Horn coach Kelly Krieg, is drawing those same plaudits.

“Most who laud the two are keeping their fingers crossed, hoping the pair decides to remain at PHS.

“Sports fans remember several fine coaches passing through the PHS athletic system only to pull up stakes and move elsewhere. But that’s often understandable. Payson’s coaching salary schedule is not remotely competitive, even when compared to the smallest of Arizona’s schools.

“So when the opportunity arrives for young coaches to better provide for their families, they often jump at the chance.”

The hopes expressed in the column will not come to fruition. Swanson has resigned to enroll at Boise State University where he will become a basketball graduate assistant and work on his master’s degree.

His departure might be defined in the lyrics of a song by the English rock band Queen — “Another one bites the dust.”

It will be interesting to see if Payson High’s new administration will endeavor to go out and attract a quality, top-notch coach to replace Swanson, or simply fill the vacant position.

For the good of the kids who play the sport, here’s hoping they actively recruit a dedicated, veteran coach with a sound coaching philosophy and a burning desire to make each individual player the best he can be.

Girls hoop camp

On the subject of prep basketball, Lady Longhorn basketball coach Kelly Krieg has set up a plan to build her program from the ground up by attracting aspiring players to youth camps.

She says her goal is “having a fun basketball camp in which we can build skills and have a positive experience with the game of basketball.”

Another of her goals is to develop in the young athletes “a love of the game.”

As the daughter of a high school basketball coach, Krieg knows what the experiences gained at a youth camp can mean down life’s road.

“Some of my best memories of basketball were attending my dad’s camps when I was in elementary and junior high school,” she said.

The opportunity to experience the thrills of attending hoop camp will occur June 11 and 12 at the inaugural Lady Horn Basketball Camp for players entering the third through eighth grades.

Two-a-day sessions will be held 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and noon to 2 p.m. in Wilson Dome.

Krieg is hoping to attract 30 to 40 day campers, but says, “We would love to have as many as we can get.”

During the two days, Krieg and her fellow coaches, which could include some varsity athletes, will teach basic skills including dribbling, passing, shooting, defense and moving without the ball. Of course anyone who watched Krieg coach last season knows she will undoubtedly include sportsmanship and character building in the camp curriculum. Games and scrimmages are also planned.

The registration fee is $30 and sign-up can be completed at: www. paysonrimcountry.com/activities or by calling (928) 474-5242, ext. 7.

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