After a 1-2 start, the Moffat County girls basketball team won three of four games to turn its record positive before winter break.
In an even better turn for the team, Roaring Fork lost two games before break, putting the Bulldogs in the driver’s seat in the Western Slope League. Now head coach Matt Ray wants to solidify that position.
Ray and the Bulldogs basketball team got together Friday and Saturday for open gyms. After a strong finish to 2012, Moffat County took time off during break in accordance Colorado High School Activities Association rules.
The time away from the hardwood can make coaches nervous, but Ray recognizes how valuable time away from the game can be.
“We have a majority” of the team here, Ray said. “The ones that aren’t here aren’t in town. They’re all accounted for, but when you’re not in town, you can’t be here. It’s Christmas break, so they should be with their families. Sometimes, break is something where, as a coach, you wish it wasn’t there, but it is. You work with it.”
Despite being 4-3 and leading the 3A WSL, the Bulldogs have not played their basketball this season. During the open gyms, Ray had the team work on one aspect of the game: shooting.
Moffat County’s offense has struggled at times this season, so Ray hopes repetition of shooting will help the Bulldogs hit more shots, especially from behind the three-point line.
“Basically, what I told them is to come in on these (open gym) days if they can, and we’re going to work on shooting,” Ray said. “They’re shooting a lot. Hopefully, some of them find their touch for the outside shot. We really haven’t hit too many of those this year, so we’ve been working on the fundamentals of footwork, holding your finish, squaring up and finding that shot.”
Aside from improving their shooting form, the open gyms and practices over break will help the Bulldogs stay in a basketball state of mind.
“Hopefully, these next three days they can find their shot, and we’ll go from there,” Ray said. “We’ll scrimmage Meeker on (Jan. 4), then we have five practices to get ready for Aspen. So it’s no rush, but I like them to stay in tune, be in here getting in shape and not just sitting around.”
Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 875-1795 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Craig Daily Press sports coverage on Twitter at @CDP_Sports.