Fairfield Ledger
https://fairfield-ia.villagesoup.com/p/1758256

Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 20, 2018

Flattery hosts future Trojans basketball camp

By Justin Webster | Jun 21, 2018
Photo by: JUSTIN WEBSTER/Ledger photo Watching their friends play basketball are, from left, Sam Weaton, Noah Mizelle, Cooper Polansky and Aaron Marcellus.

Although Fairfield Head Coach Mick Flattery has been running boys and girls summer basketball camps since 1989, he still gets every bit as excited to meet, teach and scout the future players of the game he loves so much.

Flattery says that not only do you really get to know the kids during the week-long camp, but by the end of the five days, he’ll write out a list of the top eight to 10 players for each grade so he can follow and track their progress through the years.

“This is fun basketball,” added the smiling coach. “The first two hours are skill work and we give them drills they can take home and continue to work on over the summer.”

The last half hour is when the kids get to play each other in a bracket-style one-on-one tournament where the coaches work to build the players mental toughness.

As for the drills themselves, Flattery said they keep it very simple and start with basic things like passing into the paint from the perimeter and other individual and team drills that encourage the kids to become better basketball players and not robots.

 

The other angle is that these kids get to spend time with their older siblings, their siblings friends and their heroes; all roles the high schoolers play in the fourth through ninth graders lives.

“We hope that the kids want to grow up to be like Mark [Diers] or Carson [Crile] because those kids were once in their shoes,” said Mick.

“Not only do these kids look up to the high schoolers, but my players love doing it and giving back.”

 

Fairfield’s future

“I’m always concerned with participation and some grades have less than 10 participants which tells me kids aren’t trying as many sports and that’s not good because when they get to 7-8-9th grade, they finally try it and find that they love it.”

He also repeated the coaching mantra of wanting “well-rounded student-athletes” which is a focus throughout the Fairfield extracurricular landscape that includes the music, speech and theater departments.

Flattery added that overall numbers are good and there is a lot of excitement around growing the game and he personally uses positive examples of the college and NBA game to help with that.

 

Mick’s return

First and formost, Flattery is ecstatic to be back and explains that he’s knows that he’s wanted to teach and coach since he was in eighth grade and he just loves it.

 

Trojan basketball

While they’ve had to play with most but not all parts of their team puzzle, Flattery said the team is 4-2 against 3A and 4A schools.

The skipper said that he’s encouraging his players to elevate their team goals to thoughts of conference titles and runs to the state tournament now that they’ve won 14 games and made some noise in the playoffs last season.

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