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Shooting a main focus over summer for Wildcat basketball

Andy Brown / Louisburg Sports Zone
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Louisburg senior Brayden Gage pulls up for a jumper in a drill, while teammate Kohl Vogel looks on during the team camp on June 6 at Louisburg High School. Shooting has been a focus for the Wildcats in their early summer workouts.

 

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It wasn’t the year the Louisburg High School boys basketball team was hoping for last season.

The Wildcats finished with just three wins and are now in the process of trying to replace five seniors that saw a majority of the minutes. Although there were areas for the Wildcats to improve, one stood out among the rest.

“Our No. 1 goal going into the off-season is to develop shooters,” Louisburg coach Ty Pfannenstiel said. “We really struggled to shoot the ball consistently last season so we knew that we needed to place an emphasis on that this summer. Our kids are going through daily shooting workouts in which they get up 200 shots per day. We do these workouts five days a week, so we are hoping by the end of the summer that each player take 8,000-10,000 shots over the summer.

“The kids have really bought into it. They understand that in order to develop as a shooter that it is going to take quite an investment in time and effort. We consistently have 18 to 20 doing these workouts every day. Our first week, we totaled 18,660 shots as a program.”

Shooting is one area of emphasis that Pfannenstiel plans to work on with his players throughout the summer, including during his week-long team camp that concluded on June 7. He held a freshman only session, and then another for sophomore through senior.

Even after a difficult 2017-18 season, the players were ready to see what they could get accomplished to prepare for the upcoming year.

“I thought camp was great,” Pfannenstiel said. “There is a lot of excitement with this group and it has shown with the commitment they have shown so far this summer. We had 15 freshmen and 22 to 23 sophomores, juniors and seniors.  The numbers were just right. We were able to get a lot done in those four days.”

Louisburg coach Ty Pfannenstiel looks on during the Wildcats’ team camp on June 6.

Before the camp started, Pfannenstiel also brought in his players for a 2-day shooting clinic that worked with his players on form and the importance of repetition. That clinic also helped set them with workouts to use throughout the summer.

The Wildcats also opened the summer when the varsity and junior varsity teams participated in the Mid-America Nazarene team camp and those same groups will also be traveling to the K-State team camp on June 23.

All three levels of the Wildcat program will also be participating in a Eudora tournament in early July.

“The boys are doing all that, plus doing weights three days a week and our shooting workouts five days a week,” Pfannenstiel said. “We are keeping them busy.”

Dane Dixon makes a move to the basket during a drill with assistant coach Drew Harding.

With the departure of five seniors, there will be a lot of voids to fill in the Louisburg lineup and Pfannenstiel is looking forward to watching his players improve and seizing those open spots on the varsity lineup.

“I’m just really excited for how much the kids have bought into the process,” he said. “They understand that in order to develop as a player, they are going to have to invest some time and effort. It’s not just a couple of players taking advantage of the opportunities, it’s the whole team.

“Like I said before, the kids are excited. We are just hoping to build off of this momentum from the summer and keep it going into the school year.”

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