Deron Breeze, the head boys’ basketball coach at Adair County High School, will have a very young team this year when the Indians’ take the floor this fall. He lost several players, many of which were his top scorers, to graduation.
So, to give his team some good experience in preparation for next season, Breeze put the Indians through a tough 15-game summer schedule. He also played competitive junior varsity and freshman schedules.
“We didn’t do as much this year because we have a lot of new kids,” Breeze said. “There are a couple of seniors and a couple of juniors, and some freshmen. The team is predominantly sophomores.
“During the summer, we try and play as difficult of competition as we can. The games don’t count in our win-loss record, and playing the good teams, I think, gets the guys ready for the season. I think they needed to gain some varsity experience, get some confidence.”
Adair County was 9-6 on the varsity level with victories over Logan County, Bullitt East, Berea, Leslie County, Clinton County, Southwestern, Cumberland County, Union County and Thomas Nelson. The junior varsity went 4-3 and the freshmen finished 2-1.
“Offensively, I think we’ve changed, so we’re going to be more about being five out with guards,” Breeze said. “We are probably going to have somewhat of a different offensive context, so we wanted to get them used to that.”
Breeze said he thought the Indians played well throughout the summer. However, he said they struggled in a two-game session at Metcalfe County
“It seemed like this group scored a little bit easier than in the past,” Breeze said, “or better than I thought they would. They also scored better as a whole, as we didn’t have any low-scoring games. I think we must get stronger on defense, but we’ve also got to rebound better. We don’t have a lot of height or weight on this team.”
A big factor in that this summer was the Indians played without the services of rising senior big man J.B. Piatt due to injury. Without his size and strength inside, Adair County has to look for other scoring options.
“Something I think we have to work on this summer is causing turnovers and being quick on defense,” Breeze said. “The longer the summer went on, I didn’t think we were causing the turnovers we needed to. We’re going to have to cause turnovers, get some easy baskets, to win games.”
The coach said he wasn’t too surprised by the results this summer. The said he thought this current group has the potential to be good in the fall.
“I kind of knew what this group would be eligible to do, and I think everyone lived up to expectations,” Breeze said, challenging his players. “There is a lot of talent there. There are probably 10 kids that can really play, but I am not going to play 10. So, somebody is going to have to separate themselves.”
Breeze said workouts will begin July 15.