New coaches bring fresh start to girls basketball program

By Chelsea Pettett | Reporter
As the 2011 winter season begins, there are several new faces among the MHS girls basketball program.

Dean of Students Bruce Bryant, Marshfield graduate Sarah Ferrell and Coquille High School graduate Joy Dixon are the new additions to the girls basketball coaching staff. These three join the only returning member of the coaching staff, math teacher Jessica Todd, who will coach the freshman team.

“It’s been an adjustment, but it’s going well,” Todd said. “We have a great chemistry.”

Bryant has coached before as a junior varsity and freshman coach for both the boys and girls programs. He coached on and off for about 10 years and is prepared for the new season as varsity head coach.

“I’m trying to make the most of what I’ve learned in the past,” Bryant said.

Ferrell, formerly Sarah Cunningham, has also been in the girls basketball program, but as a player. She played her entire high school career and graduated from Marshfield in 1999. Ferrell coached in Eureka, Calif., for about a year before she came to MHS and is excited to be back as a volunteer coach for all three teams.

Though Dixon has not been involved in MHS basketball before, she has played and coached at the collegiate level. A 1998 graduate of Coquille High School, Dixon played at North Arizona University and coached at Eastern Washington University. She is filling in for friend and former junior varsity girls basketball coach Chelsey Seedborg, who is on maternity leave.

“I’m excited to coach this group of girls because they’re refreshed,” Dixon said.

Bryant agrees.

“I’m really optimistic because there’s a lot of good, raw talent and key returners,” Bryant said. “It gives you something to work with.”

Dixon wants not only for the players to work hard in order to prepare themselves, but the coaches as well.

“The main goal is to set reasonable expectations for ourselves and take all we can get,” Dixon said.

Senior Kara Young is up for the challenge, having played varsity her entire high school career. Young has had a different head coach each year, so she is used to change.

“We’re still getting used to the new coaches, but we’re working hard and I think we have a better chance to do better than last year,” Young said.

After taking last season off, senior Josie Berger is also ready to compete.

“I think if we just go out there and work our hardest, we can overcome any expectations people might have of the team,” Berger said.