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Growing in a time of adjustment

Central High School’s varsity girls basketball team is going through a time of transition as Thomas Collins succeeds Scott Wilson as the Lady Chargers’ head coach, but amid a rebuilding season, Collins projects confidence born out of extensive coaching experience in the program.

Collins has led the Central junior varsity girls basketball team for years and now makes the step up to varsity.

With regard to the 2019-20 varsity Lady Chargers, he said, “I do not like to make predictions. There have already been some ‘surprises’ in the (James River District) JRD, and that is why we play the games each night. I believe we will become stronger as the year progresses and as players adjust to new roles and new basketball concepts. Any time there are changes in the coaching staff, you have to expect a time of adjustment. As these adjustments are made, the team will continue to grow and get better.”

Last season, Central finished with a 4-15 record after falling in the Region 1B Tournament quarterfinals.

The 2019-20 squad is comprised of three seniors, six juniors and three sophomores.

The seniors include Aaliyah Alexander, Brianna Anderson and Savanna Fowler. The juniors are Asia Crawley, DaJaMeka White-Freeman, Chantel Tate, Charyontay Rhodes, Keleahsha Bruce and Mariah Williams. The sophomores include Dynasty Logan, Shanitiana Hughes- Moore and Makayla Reese.

“We expect all of our players to exhibit leadership on the team,” Collins said. “We encourage positive relationship-building, decision-making and playing skills from every person at each position. From players one through 12, we anticipate the development of a strong team mentality that works hard together to win and lose games with hard work and integrity. I am excited about watching the maturity and success of this year’s Lady Chargers.”

Central endured a difficult start to the season last week with a 35-22 loss to visiting Bluestone High School and a 47-5 defeat against host Buckingham County High School, but there were lessons to take away from the contests.

“We are certainly never happy with a loss, but the team provided the crowd with an exciting comeback attempt against Bluestone,” Collins said. “We did not bring a good game to Buckingham, but in the team meeting following the game, the team recognized some areas of work that needed changing, and we look forward to implementing positive growth for the rest of the season.”

After hosting Cumberland County High School on Tuesday, Dec. 10, the Lady Chargers visit Randolph-Henry High School on Friday, Dec. 13, at 7 p.m.