Hoops hopefuls: ‘Total Package’ camp teaches basics of basketball

WILLIAMSTOWN – For Wood County Christian hoops coach Dan Ellis, learning the X’s and O’s of the game of basketball at a young age is vital.

That’s where “The Total Package Basketball Camp” at Wood County Christian School comes in.

“It’s been a great week of trying to teach the fundamentals of basketball,” Ellis said Wednesday, following the conclusion of day three of the four-day camp.

The camp is a way for the kids, from grades 3-9, to get in touch with the game and also gives Ellis and his staff a chance to promote basketball and get kids accustomed to the Wildcat style of play.

“It’s an opportunity to introduce them to the game of basketball,” Ellis said, “and also to learn some sportsmanship and some discipline as far as hard work and being diligent in your efforts. I think it’s good constructive exercise that kids can get involved in for a week of camp.”

Each day of camp kicks off with different stations that practice fundamental drills. Layups, dribbling, rebounding, defense, ball-handling and passing are all facets of the game that the camp focuses on.

Following the drills, the kids get the chance to compete in 3-on-3 and 5-on-5 exhibitions to work on in-game situations.

The camp has proved to yield positive results, as many of the players who have contributed to the Wildcats’ recent success started off participating in the camp when they were younger.

“A lot of those guys came up through our camp,” Ellis said. “Those guys that are playing at the high school level now came to our camp all the way through grade school. That’s kind of where it starts. Some kids continue to develop and other kids find other interests, but at least it gives them an opportunity to be exposed to basketball.”

Ellis pointed out that the camp wouldn’t be as successful without the help of his assistants Ron Warner, Cam Hayes, Cody Gutberlet, Darren Stevens and A.G. Harris.

“I really appreciate our coaching staff,” Ellis said. “We’ve got a really experienced coaching staff that have coached at the high school and varsity level for a number of years. We feel like the kids that come to our camp are getting exposed to excellent teachers so they can learn the skills and fundamentals.”

The final day of camp starts today at 9 a.m. Ellis and his staff are hoping to “send the kids out on a positive note.”