Highlanders basketball coach Dale Reed pleased with early season success, seeks to improve
THE WOODLANDS, Texas — The Woodlands High School varsity boys basketball team has taken off to a big 9-3 start during their pre-district round of matches and tournaments.
After finishing 19-13 and fourth in district last year, the Highlanders ended their 2014-2015 season with a loss in the first round of playoffs against Klein Forest. Head Coach Dale Reed said that while the team had a good core group of athletes who had good stretches where they played really well, the team lacked the depth necessary to carry the team through the tougher games.
Despite their early ending in the playoffs last year, things are already starting to look bright for the Highlanders. They went 9-0 and won both tournaments they competed in earlier this season and continue to secure victories at other non-district matches.
“I think we’ve already started off to a better start this year. We have great depth,” Reed said. “We have 12 to 13 kids that are playing right now that can really help us—all of them. Our guard play is really strong. We have good shooters. We’ve got some good big kids too. I love how hard we play and the depth that we have.”
With several key players returning, including sophomore point guard Romello Wilbert, it is no surprise that the Highlanders have seen early season success. However, Reed said one of the biggest contributions to the team’s great start is how well the guys get along and play together.
“They play together so well, and they get along with each other, and we don’t have factions of kids doing their own thing. It’s a really good group,” Reed said. “It’s amazing because it’s not something you can do as a coach. It’s something that kids either like each other or they don’t. You hope to foster it if you can, but for our kids when they get along it’s natural.”
In the meantime, the Highlanders are using their pre-district schedule to anticipate the things they will see once they start facing their own district opponents. Reed said they often try to play against non-district teams that hold similar features to what they will see once their district matches begin.
“We were able to play Elkins, which is going to be really similar to what we’ll see with Atascocita,” Reed said. “There’s other teams that you play that are similar to other teams in your district, so it’s just a matter of trying to look at everything we’re going to see later.”
While the team is happy with the success they’ve seen early in their season, Reed said he wants the team to keep their hunger for improvement as they move into their first round of district matches.
“I want them to know we can always get better and continue to improve,” Reed said. “I don’t ever want them to be satisfied with where we’re at, because if you get satisfied then everybody else passes you up. I really want our guys to understand that there are things we can do way better and we can continue to improve.”