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A monumental, fulfilling job

Managing 30 middle school students on three different basketball teams in a single season is a good definition of a monumental task.

That is the job Ben Green took on during the 2019-20 season for Kenston Forest School.

He had 11 girls who comprised one team. The squad was distinguished by being young, small and successful, going 7-6 overall, including 4-2 in the Virginia Colonial Conference (VCC).

Green also had 19 boys from grades six to eight come out to play — too much to manage on one team. Rather than make cuts, he ended up creating a third squad called the Gold team so all 19 could play.

He got the Gold team involved with the Blackstone Youth Recreation Association (BYRA), which helped fill out the team’s schedule.

The Gold team went 3-7 overall.

The other boys team, which played in the conference, went 5-14 overall, including 4-9 in the VCC, a key improvement on the squad’s one-win campaign last season.

Green took a moment to reflect on 2019-20.

“Everybody knew that it was going to be tough managing three different basketball teams, so the parents were incredibly supportive, and the kids are just, they’re really a great bunch of kids,” he said.

He said the season could have been a nightmare for him if he would have had problem kids, but they all understood the situation and were supportive.

“That was really cool,” Green said. “But the improvements that they made this year across the board was very fulfilling. That’s what was so rewarding to me is to see the kids grasp the instruction that I’m trying to give them and to see it at the end of the season, how far we came. So that was very exciting, very fulfilling.”

Green hopes to develop opportunities for third through fifth graders and expand Kenston Forest’s involvement in the BYRA.