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  #1  
Old 12-01-18, 10:13 AM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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The State of Lancaster Golden Gales Basketball....

Anyone that knows me personally knows that I am a huge supporter of Athletics at Lancaster which is why what I’m about to say is hard for me.

The Golden Gales Basketball program was never the best in the state but for many years was a solid program compiling over 1,000 wins several district titles, and a few final 4 appearances.

For the Last Decade I’ve watched what is maybe the worst D1 Basketball program in the state of Ohio. They have not had a season above .500 or really even close to .500. They are on their third coach in this time span and after watching the season opener last night against Teays Valley ( a game Lancaster lost 48-32) it looks like another season of the same. Good chance they won’t win a single conference game in the OCC-Ohio this season.

How does a high school with OHSAA enrollment figures of 729 boys not at least put a competitive basketball team on the court?


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  #2  
Old 12-01-18, 11:21 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Is Lancaster seriously playing Patriot Prep? W.T.F!!!-
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  #3  
Old 12-01-18, 11:23 PM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dock View Post
Is Lancaster seriously playing Patriot Prep? W.T.F!!!-


Got to try to get some wins on the schedule somehow...although the Gales pulled out a victory over Washington Courthouse earlier tonight


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  #4  
Old 12-01-18, 11:24 PM
Purple66 Purple66 is offline
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Didn't the Gales beat WCH tonight?
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  #5  
Old 12-02-18, 12:04 AM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by sportfan97 View Post
Got to try to get some wins on the schedule somehow...although the Gales pulled out a victory over Washington Courthouse earlier tonight


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Hmm... hmmm.... going to Columbus to play a D4 school. Hmmm... this makes noted [redacted] fan ‘The Dock’ feel a certain kind of way.

Sport - I haven’t forgotten about this thread. Got something cooking up that will be up here in 20 minutes. Get the welder’s mask on, get your popcorn ready.
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  #6  
Old 12-02-18, 01:34 AM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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1. Lancaster does not have enough talent in the first place (not in the HS and not in the district). Every school with 200+ boys in the entire building, especially in Central Ohio, should have at least eight kids per class that can make a difference in varsity play by the time that they graduate. Kids who push the bar higher and higher everyday in practice, and in turn can be counted on to do their job no matter the situation when their number is called. Lancaster, who has 225 boys per class, is lucky to get at least five of those sort of kids in a class and never has enough of those kids to make a 12 or 15 man varsity roster out of such! That lack of depth hurts, and it’s compounded by not having hardly any gifted athletes either.
2. ...some of the talent they do have either transfers out, or never attends LHS in the first place. Swindells and Conley instantly come to mind, here. And they leave, just like all the others that have before them and others that will after them because they know this mess of a program is not worth their skill, time, dedication and energy. More than happy to expound in this later if need be, but I think this is a pretty well understood point.
3. Lancaster does not develop players, at the high school level, into the talent necessary to compete in the OCC - let alone the OCC-Ohio. Arter and Pierce are the only exceptions in recent memory. Whitt also applies, but I think a lot of that was God-given and self-cultivated, especially given his height. Kitchen had an unbelievable ceiling as a freshman at FC, left to go to LHS because the thought was that program could do more for him in terms of development and post-secondary basketball prospects. Ended up being an average HS player when he (and his crew) should’ve been enough to keep them within reach of P Central, Gahanna and Newark, simply because Truex and that staff wasn’t doing anything to make them OCC-competitive.

4. Lancaster has, or at least until very recently, had an unbelievably horrid biddy program. This has been discussed for years.

5. The Lancaster administration, community and even the Lancaster press refuse to acknowledge what’s actually wrong with the program, instead blaming socioeconomics and their willing participation in the OCC-Ohio pretty self-explanatory, although in case it’s not clear: Rutgers football isn’t bad because it’s in the Big 10 East. Lancaster basketball, likewise, isn’t bad because they’re in the OCC-Ohio. It’s bad because the program is the Springfield Tire Fire and has been for almost ten years now. And everybody knows it but refuses to accept reality, instead casting blame on the fact that Lancaster isn’t a rich town and that they’re playing against great talent for 10 games out of the year. This obviously ends up discrediting LHS basketball and ultimately it deters some of the few glimmers of hope for Lancaster basketball from actually playing for the Gales.


Two reasons (easily fixable) that explain why they’re stuck where they’re at

1. Related to point #5 above, too many power players internally and externally need to do the program, its students, parents and community a favor: stop making lame, stale sorry piece of crud excuses and admit that they have an absolute tire fire situation. Cut the losses now before you start losing more of your only decently talented players & parents who are realizing this program is a complete waste of their time and energy and has been since they were in middle school.

2. They’re chicken about the big elephant in the room, and everybody knows it: they know they likely could lose a game against Fairfield Christian, Fisher, Berne and most definitely would lose to Bloom-Carroll and Fairfield Union. They know that all of their excuses as to why they aren’t better hang on the line for dear life if they were to play FC or FU. FC would probably be a 50-50 game, FU a sure loss. That’s why this Patriot Prep game is so stupid for LHS, because everyone knows by now that FC has tried to get Lancaster on the schedule for at least five years now and LHS either “no thanks” or no responds... but they’re more than happy to travel two hours to play D4 Caldwell, to play D3 Ross Southeastern, to play lowly West Jeff. 30 minutes to play in a shoebox against literally the second worst team in D4 Central district last year. Absolute chickens, and it’s horrible that both schools are robbed of that matchup. Goes to show what Lancaster only cares about: saving face.
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  #7  
Old 12-02-18, 07:37 AM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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The Dock!

I agree 100% with everything you just posted. Can’t even pretend to argue a single point.




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  #8  
Old 12-03-18, 09:44 AM
Hawkster Hawkster is offline
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Should have a chance with Grove City (league game) this week. Grove City's tallest player on the floor will be about 6-1 for 90% of the game. Tallest player on the roster is 6-3.
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  #9  
Old 12-06-18, 04:35 PM
BT17 BT17 is offline
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I would assume many of the problems revolve around the culture of Lancaster Athletics and its "blue collar" identity. Basketball has evolved in the past 20 years. Students are faster, more athletic, playing AAU in the offseason, etc.

Now that Lancaster Basketball has been so bad for so long, I think it will be hard to create any enthusiasm about the program to potential student athletes.
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  #10  
Old 12-07-18, 11:11 AM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BT17 View Post
I would assume many of the problems revolve around the culture of Lancaster Athletics and its "blue collar" identity. Basketball has evolved in the past 20 years. Students are faster, more athletic, playing AAU in the offseason, etc.

Now that Lancaster Basketball has been so bad for so long, I think it will be hard to create any enthusiasm about the program to potential student athletes.


The sad thing is I believe a good majority of Lancaster’s basketball players actually play AAU basketball..but I will say they aren’t that athletic.. I would say the schools better athletes are focused on football. Wrestling, baseball, and track & Field. The demand of focusing on a single sport with AAU/travel teams have hurt this program. Even the teams from 01’ thru 08’ had key players coming off the bench that were 2 and 3 sport athletes. A 6’3” Kyle Stoughton comes to mind who was the starting QB on the football team. Starting catcher on baseball team (D1 scholarship to Cincinnati) and was a good forward who saw solid minutes on a state final 4 basketball team


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  #11  
Old 12-07-18, 12:15 PM
ThePrepGuru ThePrepGuru is offline
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How much responsibility does the high school staff, specifically the head varsity coach have in developing the "biddy" programs, junior high programs, and hiring a high school staff?
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  #12  
Old 12-07-18, 12:31 PM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePrepGuru View Post
How much responsibility does the high school staff, specifically the head varsity coach have in developing the "biddy" programs, junior high programs, and hiring a high school staff?


The former varsity head coach, Luke Truex runs the Gale Force Academy and COBA travel teams that participate in the Central Ohio Basketball League and still teaches at the high school. From what I know he has a good relationship with current head coach Kent Riggs. Junior high coaches I’m not sure about and freshman/JV coaches I know he has a say in hiring.


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  #13  
Old 12-07-18, 09:14 PM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkster View Post
Should have a chance with Grove City (league game) this week. Grove City's tallest player on the floor will be about 6-1 for 90% of the game. Tallest player on the roster is 6-3.


Lancaster wins 40-38 on a last second 3 with 1.1 left on the clock. Ended a 22 game OCC-Ohio losing streak.




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  #14  
Old 12-09-18, 07:30 PM
Fan4life! Fan4life! is offline
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Their program is successful based on what their players have done after graduating. They may have struggled the last 10 years, but there are a lot of proud and supportive alumni.
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  #15  
Old 12-09-18, 08:38 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by Fan4life! View Post
Their program is successful based on what their players have done after graduating. They may have struggled the last 10 years, but there are a lot of proud and supportive alumni.
...such as?

I know Sarensen has had great success coaching at Springfield Catholic. Past that... uh, player who had success at PSU-Altoona and a bunch of guys who hooped for OU-L??
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  #16  
Old 12-09-18, 08:45 PM
Raider6309 Raider6309 is offline
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They look pretty short. Weird a huge school like Lancaster doesn’t have 6’6 kids
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  #17  
Old 12-09-18, 08:49 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by sportfan97 View Post
The former varsity head coach, Luke Truex runs the Gale Force Academy and COBA travel teams that participate in the Central Ohio Basketball League and still teaches at the high school. From what I know he has a good relationship with current head coach Kent Riggs. Junior high coaches I’m not sure about and freshman/JV coaches I know he has a say in hiring.


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Does Lancaster still do their biddy program where you have kids from across all of the schools (and even non-Lancaster students) spread across several different teams, and the teams play in different leagues (including the infamous 8” rim league that has games at Ewing and Sherman) with some volunteer parent? This is exactly how I remember it when Chevalier was the girls coach, with Truex being in his first or second year as LHS head coach for the boys?

Yeah, I won’t forget that time I swung by Ewing about 2pm on a Saturday and watched one of the Lancaster sixth grade boys teams just annihilate one of the other Lancaster teams. Even at the end, being up like 57-9 the one Lancaster team was still pressing and chocking three’s. Best part was the opposing coaches were yelling at each other. Brilliant.
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  #18  
Old 12-09-18, 09:01 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by Raider6309 View Post
They look pretty short. Weird a huge school like Lancaster doesn’t have 6’6 kids
Thomas is 6’8” but he got hurt. But height’s not really the problem, although they’ve never really been that tall in recent years.

It’s the fact they aren’t very athletic, not by OCC standards but even D1 school standards. Heck, they might be the one of the least athletic teams in the Lancaster area. That, and just not a whole lot of skills development.

For that matter, when’s the last time Lancaster has had kids doing varsity football and varsity hoops?

BTW... saw that KIPP Columbus is also on the schedule. I guess it’s better than scheduling Fairfield School for the Boys, aka “BIS”?
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  #19  
Old 12-09-18, 09:05 PM
Fan4life! Fan4life! is offline
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Originally Posted by The Dock View Post
...such as?

I know Sarensen has had great success coaching at Springfield Catholic. Past that... uh, player who had success at PSU-Altoona and a bunch of guys who hooped for OU-L??
Who is Sarensen?
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  #20  
Old 12-09-18, 09:22 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by Fan4life! View Post
Who is Sarensen?
lol, huh? You claim LHS has a bunch of basketball alumni that have post-graduate success, and you don’t know the one guy that actually is a head coach?

Who are these guys you’re referring to vaguely as being indicative of some unseen success of Lancaster basketball?
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  #21  
Old 12-09-18, 09:32 PM
Fan4life! Fan4life! is offline
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Brant Litenaker, Chris McKnight, Burre, Poston, Campbell, Truex, Cook, Stoughton, just to name a few. How old is Sarensen? Why isn't he coaching there then?
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  #22  
Old 12-09-18, 09:46 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Originally Posted by Fan4life! View Post
Brant Litenaker, Chris McKnight, Burre, Poston, Campbell, Truex, Cook, Stoughton, just to name a few. How old is Sarensen? Why isn't he coaching there then?
Litenaker? McKnight? Stoughton? All were studs, as many of them went D1 in some sport, but... those guys played how long ago? /rhetorical

I don’t think anyone here was disputing the Golden (Gale) Years that was the Greathouse era. That’s arguably one of the most impactful eras the County has ever seen. But, that was then — and this is now.

Cody Sarensen was on the team with Steve Bridgeman (who left Lancaster for BC) about 2009-2010. May be off on the years. So, 26? He’s the guy who created the No Limits basketball camp as an OU-L student for the developmentally disabled, and he did IEP/Intervention Specialty in Lancaster City Schools. Worked under Hites.

He’s in his third year at the helm for Springfield Catholic Central, who was state ranked multiple times last year. Record is something like 34-16.
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  #23  
Old 12-09-18, 10:04 PM
Fan4life! Fan4life! is offline
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Why isn't Lancaster keeping these guys around then? What division is Springfield Central Catholic? 4?

IMO, Lancaster needs to keep guys who are willing to make changes and put the work in. It's a hard job, probably one of the hardest in region. I think Sarensen was a senior during Cofman's last year?! He may have been the last to be coached/taught under the Great house/Cofman umbrella.
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  #24  
Old 12-10-18, 12:22 PM
BT17 BT17 is offline
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Originally Posted by Fan4life! View Post
Brant Litenaker, Chris McKnight, Burre, Poston, Campbell, Truex, Cook, Stoughton, just to name a few. How old is Sarensen? Why isn't he coaching there then?
Wowzers...you have to go WAY back to pick up names like those. Definitely not the last 10 years...
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  #25  
Old 12-10-18, 12:24 PM
BT17 BT17 is offline
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Originally Posted by The Dock View Post
Litenaker? McKnight? Stoughton? All were studs, as many of them went D1 in some sport, but... those guys played how long ago? /rhetorical

I don’t think anyone here was disputing the Golden (Gale) Years that was the Greathouse era. That’s arguably one of the most impactful eras the County has ever seen. But, that was then — and this is now.

Cody Sarensen was on the team with Steve Bridgeman (who left Lancaster for BC) about 2009-2010. May be off on the years. So, 26? He’s the guy who created the No Limits basketball camp as an OU-L student for the developmentally disabled, and he did IEP/Intervention Specialty in Lancaster City Schools. Worked under Hites.

He’s in his third year at the helm for Springfield Catholic Central, who was state ranked multiple times last year. Record is something like 34-16.
Sarensen graduated in 2009 (with me). He seems to be enjoying the Springfield area. I don't see a return to Lancaster anytime soon, especially considering the program's current state.
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  #26  
Old 12-10-18, 12:56 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Now that Lancaster Basketball has been so bad for so long, I think it will be hard to create any enthusiasm about the program to potential student athletes.
I genuinely think Lancaster can get the ship righted, but it’s going to take a couple years and a lot of patience. But, that’s easier said than done when both time is (and has been) running out and years of mediocrity have finally caught up to the program to where they have defections out of the program and kids within the district instead focusing on football, baseball or track & field.

I think Kent Riggs is respectable, admirable and, when he finally retires, accomplished. With that said, he probably isn’t what Lancaster needs when it comes to immediate results. I understand completely the idea behind him and Truex redeveloping and prioritizing the youth programs, but I don’t even think that’s paying off the dividends it was expected to when you look at the then-middle school teams under Truex’s leadership as varsity head and how they’re faring now. Plus, a redeveloped youth program isn’t going to be impactful if many of these kids either don’t end up playing once when they reach high school or if they go elsewhere and hoop.

I think Lancaster has good, committed people in the “higher-ups” across the board. In fact, really good people. At the same time, I think they don’t had, nor do they currently have, that great of a grip on the basketball situation or really much of a vision of where Lancaster hoops should be in the next 2-5 years and what it takes to get there. I was thinking this when they hired Riggs in the first place. And, through no fault of Riggs or the LHS administrators, they’re now in competition with their neighboring schools from both a “basketball competitiveness” image standpoint as well as a “are these Sherman/Ewing kids going to be playing basketball at 3-4 years from now, and if so then where” plank.

Yet again, I am calling for former JJHuddle commenter “AndyBernard” to join us. Where are you, Andy?!
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  #27  
Old 12-10-18, 02:21 PM
Fan4life! Fan4life! is offline
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I agree, Riggs is doing a fine job and Truex is doing what they can with the youth program. What is Lancaster's next steps after Riggs? How much longer will he coach?
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  #28  
Old 12-11-18, 09:47 PM
sportfan97 sportfan97 is offline
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Lancaster loses @ home to LOGAN 65-37 tonight.

The score was 25-24 Logan at halftime. How do you get outscored 40-13 In the second half of a game when your at home?


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  #29  
Old 12-11-18, 09:56 PM
The Dock The Dock is offline
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Lancaster loses @ home to LOGAN 65-37 tonight.

The score was 25-24 Logan at halftime. How do you get outscored 40-13 In the second half of a game when your at home?


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Part of this is Logan’s Bo Myers is an absolute g.d. stud.

Part of this also is Lancaster is just that far up the creek. Thank goodness Grove City is both short and on a brand new coach??? (Greg Waits, GC coach since 2004, retired over the summer.)
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Old 12-11-18, 10:39 PM
Pickeringtonsports Pickeringtonsports is offline
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My son plays for the Pickerington Ridgeview 8th grade team. We played Ewing earlier today and the final score was 80-4. The Ridgeview coach wasn’t trying to run it up or anything like that. The issue was not coaching. The Ridgeview 8th grade class is off the charts. I just think high school basketball is going through a transition period in that AAU is taking over. Kids are transferring all over the place and Lancaster isn’t a destination school for most AAU players. Our most competitive game will be against Pickerington Lakeview and Reynoldsburg. The 7th grade class at Ewing seemed really competitive so Lancaster just needs 2-3 good classes in a row. Good luck the rest of the season.
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