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Coach Price Freezes Out Competition for Winter Coach of the Year

Neiko Megrichian, Sports Editor

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The year is 2016 and the final buzzer of the girls basketball season sounds. They finish with four wins on the season; Zoe Price and her girls are underwhelmed, and with no games left to play there is only one thing left to do: prepare for the future.

The future arrives two seasons later and the Lady Chiefs basketball team goes 20-9, making it just one victory away from states. Price and the girls competed better than ever making the 2017-2018 season the best in school history. Last month, the Sun-Sentinel named Coach Price Coach of the Year.

“We had two really great transfers who made an impact right away,” said Price.

Brona Jean and Heaven Sanders will be entering their senior and junior years respectively in the 2018-19 season.

The Lady Chiefs basketball team goes on an annual retreat hosted by Coach Price at the beginning of every season. Price has a strict no-phone policy while on the beach house getaway, and for good reasons. She believes that the girls should not be distracted in order to focus solely on two major points that build success: team bonding, and goal setting.

An interesting theory specific to the Coach of the Year is that she doesn’t believe in team goals. Instead, she has each player look back and reflect on her practices and previous seasons, and then she has her girls set individual goals.

“It keeps everything less stressful,” said Price. “It allows them to focus on themselves instead of worrying about everything else on the court.”

And with a 20-9 record, coming up a victory short of states from a young team, there might just be a method to her madness. Price seems to heave a sort of zeal about herself and her team as she doesn’t absolutely stress her players out about the uncontrollable. As long as they give everything in their tank to help fuel the team to achieve the highest level of competitiveness, she is satisfied.

She said her team’s potential doesn’t lay in the stats. Her mantra: “If you try your best, what are you gonna look like?  If you’re sick, try your best. What are you gonna look like? If you had a rough day at school, try your best. What are you going to look like?”

The proof is in the pudding. These girls came to play with every step on the court.

Leading up to states, only Deerfield Beach stood in their way. Deerfield had a good season, however did not measure up to the Chiefs’ previous two opponents in Palm Beach Gardens and Boca Raton.

A couple of the coaches believe that the moment was too big, however according the Coach Price, there’s always a silver lining.

“Yeah it was a huge heartbreak, but it is very motivating for next season,” she said.

She has the six returning seniors on the team meet once a week to build leadership skills so that Lady Chiefs have a strong unit centralized within the team, not just behind the clipboard.

 

 

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