Scotland County girls basketball coach Jaryt Hunziker said there were two reasons why he pursued the same position at Boonville High School.

Scotland County girls basketball coach Jaryt Hunziker said there were two reasons why he pursued the same position at Boonville High School.

While leading the Lady Tigers to a 67-39 record in four seasons, Hunziker said the Boonville job was appealing to him because he and his wife always loved the Columbia area and wanted to get closer to it. The second reason, he said, is that the Boonville girls basketball program has had a great tradition over the years that any coach would love to be a part of.

In a school board meeting Wednesday night, Hunziker was hired to lead the Lady Pirates basketball program for the 2012-13 season.

A 2001 graduate of Culver-Stockton, Hunziker took over the head boys basketball position for one year at Scotland County before moving to Clark County to hold the same position from 2003-2008. Then, from 2008 to the present, Hunziker returned to Scotland County to head the girls program, where the Lady Tigers captured one district title and appeared in the district championship game two other years.

In an interview with Bud Schrader of the Kirksville Daily Express, Hunziker said, “I thought we consistently had one of the best defenses in the area year after year. “The girls I had all worked hard and were disciplined and dedicated. That will serve them well not on only on the basketball court, but life as well.”

With a career record of 110-93, Hunziker has also received numerous awards for his team’s success on the floor. As the Kirksville Daily Express Girl’s basketball Coach of the Year in 2009 and 2011, Hunziker was also selected as the KHQA Coach of the Year Runner-Up (2011), the WGEM People’s Choice Girls basketball Coach of the year (2011), and the Class 2 District 6 Girl’s Basketball Coach of the Year (2011).

While the Lady Pirates slipped last year at 10-15 overall and 5-7 in the North Central Missouri Conference, Hunziker said in the Kirksville Daily Express that he doesn’t feel that there will be much of an adjustment in going to a bigger school.

“Coaching is coaching,” he said in the Kirksville Daily Express. “It’s like in the move Hoosiers, the rim is still 10 feet high. The big difference is the athleticism of the players. You still have to prepare the same way, no matter where you coach.”

The following is a question and answer with new Boonville girls basketball coach Jaryt Hunziker.

Q:What is your philosophy on basketball?
A: The philosophy of our basketball program is simple; to build hard working, respectful, dedicated, and quality athletes who are prepared to succeed at the highest level both on and off the court.  The goals of our program are not solely focused on wins and loses, but based on teaching young student-athletes the proper fundamentals and techniques it takes to succeed at the highest level. The priorities of the basketball program that need to be emphasized are:

True character is revealed in the person that you are when no one is watching.  Your character should be a shining example of who you are in every aspect of your life, not just on the basketball court.  Set an example for others in word and in deed everyday of your life.

Display an attitude of commitment, passion, enthusiasm, trustworthiness and loyalty.  Your attitude should be contagious to others and should never think, feel or act in a negatively harmful manner.  A positive attitude can bring out the best in everything and everyone.

To be consistent mentally, physically and emotionally with preparation to produce optimal performance both on and off the court.  It’s not what you do on game day that makes you a champion…it’s what you do every day leading up to game day that determines your success.

A total release of all of your gifts and abilities in a relentless pursuit of excellence.  Whatever you do, work at it with all of your heart.  In sport or in life, leave nothing on the floor and look back on your performance knowing that you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming.
By doing this we construct a foundation on which to build for years to come, and in the process teach our young athletes how to succeed in basketball and in life.  There is nothing more important to our program than to help nurture quality basketball players, which are truly quality people.  If our focus and emphasis is placed solely on preparing young student-athletes to succeed on and off the court, we have all done our part to make our entire basketball program an ultimate success.

Q: What are your short-term goals? (3-5 years)
A: Establish a program that everyone can be proud of that competes every year for a Conference or District title. Make the Lady Pirates into one of the best defensive teams in the area or even the State.

Q: What are your long-term goals? (5-10 years)
A: Continue with the tradition established by making Boonville one of the best in the State.

Q: What type of offense should we look to see from the Boonville Lady Pirates?
A: I always run some type of motion offense where we try to push the ball looking to get something in transition. If we can not we will pull it out and get the best shot we can by being disciplined. The offense will be based on our personnel. We will play to our strengths.

Q: What type of defense should we look to see from the Lady Pirates?
A: Some sort of pressure defense-man or zone. I love keeping other teams off balance and guessing. Again this will be based on the personnel of the team. I’m a defensive coach so we will take pride in our defense every possession.

Q: How familiar are you with the North Central Missouri Conference? What do you want to accomplish in the NCMC?
A: Scotland County is not to far from Kirksville so I have seen some of the Conference teams play over the year. I feel that it is one of the most competitive conferences in the State of Missouri. It will be a pleasure being a part of it. Like any coach, we want to compete every year to be the best if not one of the best teams in the NCMC. We want to work hard and gain the respect of the other coaches in the league.

Q: Since Boonville dropped down from Class 4 to Class 3, do you think the Lady Pirates can be a contender year in and year out in the playoffs?
A: Playing a Class 4A schedule will most definitely help in the post season. But with that being said, we still have to show up and play disciplined offense and defense to be in a position to have success in the post season.

Q” Do you plan on having summer camps and playing in leagues this summer?
A: Once school gets out, I plan on dedicating myself to the Lady Pirate Program. Open gyms, summer camps, leagues, shootouts will all be apart of it. I always have felt that you have to get everything established in the summer and I can’t wait to work with the girls.

Q: Are you a believer that defense wins championships as well in basketball?

Q: What will you be teaching at Boonville?
A: Some PE/Health at the Middle School and Credit Recovery at the HS in the afternoon.