Anderson glad to finally seeing team playing other teams again

Chris Bowie
Boonville senior Lane West shoots over a Warrensburg player during a scrimmage last Thursday at Hannah Cole Elementary. The scrimmage against Warrensburg was the first of the season for the Boonville boys basketball team, which has been regulated to skill work and open gyms in June due to the coronavirus.

Boonville boys basketball coach Mark Anderson was just glad to see his team playing another team Thursday at Hannah Cole Elementary.

After spending second half of June working on skill work and 2 on 2, 3 on 3 and 5 on 5 against each other, the Boonville Pirates basketball team finally got in some much needed work after the dead week with a scrimmage against members of the Warrensburg Tigers basketball team.

Anderson said there is a possibility that Boonville may scrimmage again on Wednesday, but if not the Pirates will scrimmage again on July 22 against New Franklin.

As for the scrimmage against Warrensburg, Anderson said he just wanted to see his team play against somebody else.

“Really this was nothing more than what we would have done in open gym,”Anderson said. “We just played games to 15, however, it was different seeing the kids against somebody else. I think had we had nine kids show up and Warrensburg had 10.”

With all Boonville teams off last week due to dead week, Anderson said this was the first week that his team has been able to do contact drills with other kids. He said before this week, they couldn’t even do 1 on 1, 2 on 2 or 5 on 5.

But now that Boonville is in Phase 3, Anderson said the restrictions have been relaxed a little bit.

“Before this week we had to maintain social distance and we couldn’t have defense, so we were doing a lot of chair work,” Anderson said. “It’s lessened up this week but we still had some restrictions. Parents weren’t allowed to come and watch and we had to limit the number of people we had in the gym. We had hand sanitizers and all the sprays, too, but kids are going to come into contact with each other.”

With 20 contact days set by the conference, Anderson said his teams have been able to do some individual stuff with the players before the dead week. He said before dead week, the coaches worked with kids in groups of 10 but no contact. Now, he said, the kids have able to play with other teams.

“We worked on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday,” Anderson said. “We worked on skill work, 2 on 2 and 3 on 3 and then the last hour we let them play 5 on 5.”

As for what Anderson plans to accomplish in this shortened time frame, he said it gives the kids a chance to guard and see how they will change and adjust to things on the fly. He said obviously the kids and the coaches want to get in the gym more and that’s been frustrating, but there’s been some positives.

“Obviously in a perfect world you would like to play some different teams and more styles, but that’s just not going to happen this summer,”Anderson said. “What we wanted to accomplish against Warrensburg was to play against somebody else to see where some kids stood. Obviously, Warrensburg had some size, which was good. They really did a nice job with ball screen and screen and roll, which is something we don’t really get to see much because we don’t do that a whole lot.”

As for the rest of the summer going forward, Anderson said the camps have been called off due to the virus. He said that was frustrating because it’s one time, where you really can focus on your programs a little bit and focus on the younger kids and get to know them a little bit and have a chance for them to get their t-shirt and hang around some of the older kids that come in and help.

“It just kind of builds that program identity,”Anderson said. “That’s something that we’ll miss, but I think there are a lot of schools in the same boat this summer, so that’s been a frustrating part of the summer.”

As for the 2020-21 season, Anderson said it’s a long way away obviously but he is starting to see all the things going on with colleges, football and everything else. “You just have to have faith that you are going to play and obviously we sure hope we play this year,”Anderson said.

In the meantime, the Boonville boys basketball team will continue to hold open gyms and work on skill work.