Lady Warriors to compete in summer league

Published 9:20 pm Friday, June 15, 2012

By Titus Mohler
Correspondent

The girls basketball team at Nansemond River will be competing in the Woodrow Wilson Summer League starting on June 19.

The Lady Warriors and the other Suffolk schools usually compete in a girls league held by King’s Fork, but since KF will not have one this year, NR looked to Wilson’s group which has existed for 12 years.

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“They’re going to have 12 teams,” NR coach Calvin Mason said, “so pretty good representation of teams in the area, and I think it’s going to be one of the better (leagues) in the area.”

The league will run for about four weeks, playing games on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Each team will play each other once, and then a tournament consisting of the squads with the top eight records will determine the league winner.

Mason is enjoying the continuity that leagues like this one bring to his team during the offseason.

“The biggest benefit, especially for schools like us, is that we have a chance to keep them together during the summer,” he said.

Though basketball season has been over for a while, the team has been participating in conditioning sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays since March. The summer league takes the conditioning a step further.

“We get the chance to keep them,” Mason said, “and they get to play in an organized setting.”

Some of the younger girls at NR who will participate at Wilson are already playing in the Future League for seventh- through ninth-graders run through Boo Williams.

Mason highlights the value of the opportunity that will greet those girls in the Wilson Summer League.

“The younger girls,” he said, “especially the younger girls who are going to be playing at the varsity level for the first time, it allows them to get an idea of what the speed of the game is like, because it’s a big difference between playing JV and varsity. So, they get kind of acclimated to playing at a different level against a whole lot better talent than what they’re used to playing with at the JV level.”

From a coaching standpoint, Mason sees the league as a teaching tool.

“It allows us to see reactions without a lot of practice,” he said. “It allows us to evaluate them individually. We try to be sure everybody plays, has a chance to kind of put in some things that we may be doing.”

Mason remarked that the games will represent a chance to try out certain things that could work during the regular season, and also reveal what will not work as well.

Through the Woodrow Wilson Summer League, the Lady Warriors hope to get what every team could use for the winter season — a head start.