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Petty takes helm of Redskin basketball PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 14 July 2017 08:05


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Ryan Petty watches from the bench during a basketball game in 2014. Petty has been named the coach for the Liberal Redskins after the resignation of Scott Hinkle earlier this year. Courtesy photo

By EARL WATT

• Leader & Times

After Scott Hinkle resigned earlier this year as the head coach of the Redskins basketball program to become an assistant principal at Liberal High School, the search for his replacement didn’t need to go very far.

As a matter of fact, it didn’t have to leave the bench.

Former Liberal Redskin and assistant coach Ryan Petty was named to replace Hinkle.

Petty’s journey in coaching started while he was still attending the University of Kansas when he became a student assistant alongside his brother Reece Petty on the staff of former Redskin head coach Rod Briggs at Lansing High School.

After he graduated, he came to assist Hinkle for a year before taking the head freshmen job at Gardner-Edgerton.

But Hinkle persisted, and Petty returned to assist the Redskins and coach the junior varsity for the past two seasons.

His JV squad had a strong season, and many of them will fill the varsity void left by 10 graduating seniors.

“The No. 1 thing for me is toughness,” Petty said of want he wants to see in his players. “On top of that, I want our guys to be smart. I will stress time and score at all times. We will work on that. We will play hard.”

He will also expect his players to control what they can.

“One of the things I tell them all the time, you can’t control whether or not you will make the jump shot, but you can control attitude and effort,” he said.

Petty also brings a wealth of knowledge about Liberal, its opponents, and he plans to pass that to his players.

“I want our guys to be really prepared,” Petty said. “Everybody we play next year, we already have a scout on them. We know who is coming back, match-ups — we will be prepared.”

But Petty won’t have a lot of varsity experience on his first roster.

“It will be a big transition losing 10 guys on varsity,” he said. “With the guys we have coming back, two have played in a varsity game for meaningful minutes. On top of that, with the guys coming back, only four ever suited up for varsity. We will be very young and small. We have already put a focus on rebounding, playing tough, getting those 50-50 balls. I don’t like to give up easy points. After we defend, we have to get the rebound and not give up extra possessions.”

Petty has already started next season by getting his team experience in the summer.

“We have played in three MAYB tournaments,” he said. “We went to KU team camp in Lawrence, we are going to Garden City team camp and going to another MAYB tournament in Wichita. We will get in six tourneys altogether, and play more than 30 games. We will also get 10 more games against Guymon and Hugoton.”

That court time will be invaluable for a team that has not played varsity before, and he has had 15 players participating.

“We have six incoming seniors I look to be on the roster,” Petty said. “The junior class really got hurt with 10 seniors last year when they were sophomores. With the senior class this year, that is 16. A lot of sophomores had a tough time knowing they wouldn’t get to play much, so some didn’t stick with it. Hopefully as juniors they will play with us.”

While Petty has already jumped in, he hasnt missed the special moment for his career.

“It is a dream come true,” he said. “I’ve always wanted to be a high school head basketball coach. To do it in my hometown is exciting. I know Liberal, I know our opponents. I know them just as well as anybody — the rivalries, the WAC.”

And the first game of the season against Holcomb may be months away, but it is already on his mind.

“It all starts with Holcomb,” he said. “You look back, they lose three guys from a team that wins the state championship.. I went and watched them in Wichita. We will have our hands full. They have a 6-8 guy, a three-year starter at guard. I don’t have one game circled, but I have looked at Holcomb, that is the first game. We are the one team they have circled. We beat them last year.”

Petty also wants to meet with grade school players and parents so that they start playing early.

“Teams where we had successes, they’ve been plying since fifth,  sixth grade,” Petty said. “Successful team start young. We need that to get going.”

 

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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