Thursday, December 10, 2009

What time is it? Game Time!

Well, tomorrow it all begins. This new version of the Lady Broncs starts on its own Hamilton...the site of this year's state tournament. We're on the road to home:)

We sure have a lot of work ahead of us, but I am truly encouraged by what I see. We have strong leaders/returners and a crop of sophomores ready to get better and keep the tradition alive.

We came up with a type of "core covenant" that we will hopefully reflect daily. We're S.T.U.C. Our girls demonstrate great Sportsmanship, embrace the Lady Bronc Tradition of excellence, are unconditionally Unified, and are always Competitive.

Good luck this weekend girls and may we truly reflect these covenants throughout the season!

Go Broncs.

Coach Albert

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Be totally committed...

What does it mean to be totally committed? This applies to both daily life and of course basketball. Today at practice we worked on our half court defensive responsibilities. Several of our players knew where to in when it was necessary for them to help when a teammate got beat. However, none were willing at this point to totally commit to taking a charge. Granted, this is a difficult and challenging skill, but it really does simply require a player to sacrifice themselves for the good of the team.

Commit to doing whatever it takes to get better, to make your team improve. Do the little things. Commit to making the jump stop, to making the extra pass, to talking on defense, to crashing the boards, to blocking out and to encouraging others. Commit to leading by example and putting the needs of the team ahead of your own. Finally, commit to being the most excellent teammate you can be. Take the charge!

We are...the BRONCS!

Coach Albert

Sunday, November 22, 2009

3-0 On The Road Ain't Bad...

Congratulations to Bert and the Lady Bobcats on their
3-1 start! They just beat up on the University of Idaho in Moscow on Sunday. Ashley had 13 points and 4 rebounds off the bench. The Cats have some very nice depth this year, especially with their freshmen class.
We had a nice trip to Bozeman on Friday to watch MSU in their first home game...they didn't play very well versus a very good (big and strong) BYU. Rachel, Jill, Misha and Kaurie represented the Lady Broncs enthusiastically from the stands...signs and all!
It starts tomorrow ladies...the Broncs will try to continue what they started 4 seasons ago. We have gotten better every year since then and I am confident this year's version of the Lady Broncs won't be any different. We set a high standard last season with our magical finish. I am more excited about this season than any in recent memory. I'll be here by 5:40 am...see you ready to go by 6:00! Don't forget to bring all paperwork and a great attitude. Get some sleep and we'll see you in the morning.
Coach Albert

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Journey Begins on Monday, the 23rd...

High school basketball practice begins on Monday, November 23rd. The varsity and JV teams will practice at 6:00 am and the frosh at 6:00 pm.
Check out the picture of former Lady Bronc Ashley Albert playing for the Montana State Bobcats last weekend in California. Bert represented us well with 6 points in the game vs Bakersfield and 7 against the university of Pacific. She plays about 10 minutes a game backing up all confernce forward Sarah Strand. The Cats are off to a great start with 2 road wins. They will play their first home game this Friday against BYU. Should be a good one. If you're interested in either watching the Cats play or listening to the radio broadcast, just click on the appropriate link on the Montana State website.
With the college season under way, it gets me excited about the Lady Bronc prospects this winter. We should be a contender...even with the likes of returning state champion Anaconda and tall and talented Stevensville. "Risk must be taken to pursue solutions to seemingly impossible situations." I hope you are all ready to get after it! See you Monday morning!
Coach Albert

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

We're half way through our 2009 "Instructional League For Girls." It's been a terrific time of skills, drills and games. The graphic above is this year's T-shirt design...I love it!
This year we are spending 90 minutes with 1st - 4th graders and another 90 with 5th and 6th graders. We have about 60+ young ladies all trying to become better basketball players. The evenings can get a little long for Coach Brumwell and myself after a day of work but we are having a blast. The girls have been very coachable and we're already seeing signs of improvement. Last night there were a lot of little red faces by the time we were done.
I am so encouraged by the enthusiasm for our awesome sport of basketball. I have no doubt the things accomplished by the the last three Lady Bronc teams, especially last year's state runner up has gone a long way towards inspiring the future young ladies who may one day suit up for the us. Thanks girls.
I am also getting geared up for this year's season which starts on the 23rd. Boy do we have our work cut out for us with Anaconda returning 4 starters and Stevi also with adding the state's best freshman player. I am excited nonetheless. We have a terrific group of girls and some very solid players returning for us this season. I have a feeling that by the end of this year, no one will want to play us. Come catch a game if you can, and cheer on this year's version of the Hamilton Lady Broncs!
Coach Albert

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It could happen...

Remember the movie Angels in the Outfield? The catch line in the movie was from the the main character, a little boy who saw angels and was convinced his baseball team, the California Angels could win the championship if they only believed. Few around this boy believed like he did, but he kept reassuring them, "It could happen."
Well, this Saturday the Hamilton Broncs take on the class "A" field at the 2009 State Cross Country. We won our first state title in boys last year and we're hoping our girls can finish in the top three for the 3rd consecutive year.
"It could happen..."
Boys run at 11:00 and girls at 12:10. Hope to see you at the University of Montana Golf Course on Saturday!
Coach Albert

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Three weeks to go...

It was a terrific meet at the Daly Mansion last Saturday. The weather was great and the Broncs were even better! The girls won their 3rd consecutive Hamilton Invitational championship beating teams from Ronan, Corvallis, Polson, Darby, Drummond, Arlee, Big Fork, Dillon and Anaconda. 47 points is a terrific winning score. What a difference from the previous week!
Our Junior high boys' team also took first...pretty impressive considering the Missoula youth track club also participated. Easton finished first in a tremendous show of heart. He ran a very strategic, gutsy race to beat Aiden from Anaconda for the 3rd consecutive race; after Aiden had beaten him the first two meets. These two will undoubtedly have a very exciting rivalry for the next 5 years. There's nothing like quality competition to make you better.
Don't shy away from the tough match ups...embrace them. Use each contest to become a better competitor. That's why it's so important for kids to participate in more than one sport. You can always spend additional time on your favorite sport like basketball, but it's experiencing competition in other arenas that will truly add to your mental toughness.
Life is good...healthy competition helps you prepare to make it better. Enjoy the rest of the season and COMPETE!!
Coach Albert

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Nothing like adversity...

Well, Saturday was the largest meet of the year...The Mountain West Classic in Missoula. Over 2000 runners participated! The meet was dominated by schools from Spokane. The #7 ranked girls team in the country, Shadle Park won the team title overwhelmingly. We were a distant 29th...primarily because yours truly had the team start slower than normal. This is a terrible strategy considering the number of athletes lined up for this race. We had to come from dead last to even place as high as we did. Great job girls.

Ahh, adversity...the weeds, the dead branches, the pot holes of a sports' season. Despite being disappointed in our overall performance and my own dereliction of duty, this situation, like most adversity required some weed pulling, pruning and pot-hole filling. There's nothing like adversity or disappointment to help a team and its coach get refocused. It provides some motivation to really excel, to refine goals and to challenge ourselves to meet potential. Good stuff! I can hardly wait for our next meet here in Hamilton.

Go Broncs!

Coach Albert

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Another Couple of Wins...

The varsity girls XC team posted their 3rd win of the season winning the Corvallis invitational with a score of 43 beating Corvallis, Darby, Anaconda, Dillon and Drummond. Up next is the "world famous" Mountain West Classic in Missoula. The meet starts at 9:30 with the JV boys and finish es with the middle-schoolers about 12:30.

Our Middle school boys won their third meet of the year as well. The Broncs were led by Easton Albert and Karil Apedaile (1st & 3rd respectively).

Additional pictures in this blog are of scenes from our first "ultimate football" game at practice on Friday and our team dinner on Thursday. As our team shirts say, "Life is good...cross country makes it better!"
Good luck this week Hamilton Broncs.

Coach Albert

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Perfect Score!

Congratulations to the Hamilton Lady Broncs XC team. Last weekend in a dual meet with Ronan, the ladies did something few can lay claim to...even in a dual meet. They achieved a perfect score! For those of you who don't know, XC is like golf, the lowest score wins. Points are awarded by place. For example first place gets one point, 2nd place gets 2 points, 3rd place gets 3 and so on. Our girls took the first 5 places in the Ronan Canal meet...15 points, the lowest score possible. Hats off to Coach Gale Decker and his daughter Noelle for puting on a terrific meet...please keep Mrs. Decker in your thoughts and prayers as she is in a serious battle with Lou Gehrig's Disease.

My pictures this week are from a "Hill repeat" practice of ours here in Hamilton. What a setting for practice huh?!! I absolutely adore this place I call home. It is truly God's country. On this September 11, let's remember what a blessing and privilege it is to live in this great country of ours and reside in such as special place like Hamilton Montana!

Good luck tomorrow in Anaconda. Go Broncs!

Coach Albert

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ahh...fruits and veggies!

The last two weeks I have been inspired to drastically change my eating habits...primarily to fit into my dress pants for school which starts on Tuesday:)

As you can see from the pictures, fruit has been the main staple along with vegetables, nuts, fish, rice, yogurt, small whole wheat bagels...and of course, popcorn! I have completely avoided processed food, fried food, soda pop and really, all high sugar deserts. Water has been the primary beverage with an occasional juice or tea. I have allowed a small bit of dark chocolate so I don't completely go insane.

It's been good. I have more energy and have none of the side effects you get from eating all of the food listed above. I plan to add back moderate amounts of eggs, beef, pork and chicken. I hope I can be disciplined enough to continue this eating plan, it's obviously much healthier...especially for someone my age:)

In addition, I'm back to working out with much more intensity. I only spend 40 minutes in the weight room but attack arms, legs and abs in a way that leaves me exhausted. This is good. Just like shooting baskets, the more-game like intensity used during drills the more you'll get out of the workout. Just showing up is half the battle...the intensity will take you the rest of the way.

I encourage you all to eat healthier this school year. Be sure and get enough calories. You don't want to be in calorie need the fuel! However, if you knew we could be one game or one meet better simply by eating more responsibly, would it be worth it? Would a state title be worth giving up pop and junk food for a few months? It would for me! Something to think about.

Go Broncs!

Coach Albert

Saturday, August 29, 2009

You gotta love the off-season!

This fall is when we are going to get better. If we're going to play for the state title on our home floor (believe me, it could happen) then this fall you need to get in the gym and the weight room. Every Monday through Thursday 6:30 am - 7:45 am I will be available to lift and shoot with anyone willing to put the time in.
Go Lady Broncs!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

August 20, 1988

Thanks to my beautiful wife Carla for the last
21 years of marital bliss:)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Fall 2009...the start of a new school year!

Just under three weeks until the first day of school! This may be exciting to some and dissappointing to others...either way, it's about that time:)

Remember that middle school cross country and girls basketball starts the first day of school, Tuesday, September 8th. You must have a physical before you can compete! The fall sports meeting is Monday, August 31st at 6:30 at HMS.

Other important dates include registration for classes at the high school. Wednesday, Sept. 2nd is the day to register for seniors (11:30) and Juniors (2:30) in the commons. Sophomores are at 9:00 and incoming freshmen are at 6:00 pm in the performing arts center (PAC) on Thursday, September 3rd.

Don't forget these important dates and enjoy the rest of your summer!!

Coach Albert

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Learning to Manage Injuries

The unfortunate truth all athletes must face is the reality that they will become injured. Accepting this fact and learning how to manage injuries is an important skill for all athletes to acquire.

Common running injuries are shin splints, plantar faciitis, IT band soreness, knee pain and hip pain. If these become chronic or get too painful to compete be sure and see a doctor and/or physical therapist. (Report all injuries to your athletic trainer!)However, your goal is to "manage" these potential injuries before they become too serious. Perhaps the best thing you can do is ice, stretch and rest. Take care of the small "tweaks" before they become nagging injuries that keep you out of competitions.

Of course the ankles and knees (along with backs) are the most common ailments for basketball players. We already talked about knees in the last blog...let me address ankles. The most useful acronym I have found for dealing with ankle sprains is R.I.C.E. This stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. (Ashley is employing this right now after she sprained her ankle last night at open gym.) Be sure to get weight off your ankle. This may require using cruthes for a day or two. Ice frequently (20 minutes on, 20 minutes off). Wrap your ankle with an ACE wrap to keep the swelling down especially when walking around or sleeping at night. Elevation is the technique to use gravity to pull out some of the swelling. Prop your foot up on some pillows and get it above your heart for best results. The degree of sprains is different but the use of RICE can really help speed up the healing process.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but you will be injured. However, accepting this reality and learning to manage these injuries can get you "back out there" a lot quicker and probably stronger than before.

Here's hoping for an injury-free season!!!

Coach Albert

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

ACL Prevention

As most of you know, we have incorporated landing drills as part of our practice routine in the girls basketball program for the past three years. I firmly believe they have made a difference for those kids who have focussed on executing the drills with the proper technique.

Last summer, Ashley strained her knee pretty good and it turns out she was a milimeter away from tearing her ACL. Fortunately the muscles around her knee were just strong enough to keep this injury from becoming too serious.

Of course there are no secret formulas to preventing injuries but the research does show what a difference landing and jumping drills can do to help significantly reduce the occurence of ACL tears.

Immediately after seeing Dr. Schutte at Northern Rockies Rehabilitation Center, Ashley was put on a landing program similar to the one we used from both Doug Martin of Hamilton Physical Therapy and Carla Albert of Catalyst Physical Therapy. They have really helped her recovery process. The only thing that I'm concerned about is that our athletes only do these drills during the season or after an injury has already occured.

Dr. Schutte recommends doing just 2 or 3 of these drills daily to strengthen the muscles around the knee and more importantly train these muscles how to "land," because it is in the incorrect landing that causes ligament damage. It's the nueromuscular training that makes all the difference!

Check out the following link for some drills or get a hold of a local physical therapist (I know a cute one:) and get some drills you can work on this summer. In fact, Carla would be happy to give you a specific program and the training to do it properly. (240-3494)

A great research article is found in The American Journal of Sports Medicine, Vol. 33, No. 7

Happy Landing!

Coach Albert

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Fall Sports Meeting Tonight

Tonight (8/11) at 6:30 is the annual fall sports meeting for cross country, football, soccer, golf and volleyball. It is a terrific informational meeting. We'd especially like to get an idea of who is coming out for our XC teams this year. We will have a meet and practice schedule for you as well as introduce you to our new assistant coaches...come find out who they are, I know you will be pleasantly surprised:)

Be sure and have a physical completed before the first day of practice on Monday, August 17 at 8:30 am. Remember too that pay to play is $80. We will bike in the evenings about three days a week. Our first meet is Tuesday September 1st in Butte and you will need to have attended a minimum of 10 practices and have your pay to play paid at that time..

See you tonight!!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

NBC 2009

We had a terrific week at NBC Whitworth with our 7 Hamilton girls (Natalie Hayes not pictured). All six pictured here played in the oldest league and held their own...I was very proud! Not surprisingly, they were the most consistent shooters in the league and pretty skilled by comparrison. The time spent on fundamentals by these middle schoolers has really paid off! In addition, Hamilton was represented on the all star team by Jaylee and Taylor. I'm looking forward to watching these girls play school ball this fall and coaching them again during the AAU season. Congrats girls on a great week and good luck this season!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Summertime Improvement

I'm headed to NBC in Spokane this weekend with about 8 Hamilton middle school girls. (I've done this before:) We have a very bright future because of all the time these girls are puting in. I sure hope all of you hoopers are puting in the driveway time. Let's not wait 4 more years
until we play for a state title again. In fact, we have a chance to be quite good next year, (maybe play for it again on our home floor) but we have to keep getting better. Shoot, shoot again and
then shoot some more!

All you's only about 3 weeks away until we start...get some miles in now. Be sure to be recruiting. I think our numbers may be down so we'll need your help to get more kids out. We all know what a great atmosphere our team has, let's share that with as many people as possible!

Have a great rest of the to you soon.

Coach Albert

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Montana...God's Country!

Check out this short video from our most recent hiking trip to the Big Hole. Awesome trip despite the satanic swarm of mosquitoes:)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

What a Season!!

Let's do it again:)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Open Gym

Open gym tomorrow, this Monday July 13 8:30 - 9:30 at HHS.

Fun can be painful...

Well today was the day of the Missoula Marathon. I ran the half (13.1 miles) in 1 hour and 51 minutes. It wasn't a PR by any stretch but I was pleased...I just won't eat so much the day before next time. Danica ran hers in 1:37 if remember what she told me. Either way, she kicked this old coach's butt:)
Coach Jessop also ran his first marathon without having run over 12 miles during training. He finished in just over 5 I do not endorse his training method but I am proud of him tackling this huge challenge of running 26.2 miles!
I am planning to train for the next two months to try my second run at the marathon distance in Whitefish at the Two Bears Marathon on Sept. 12. So you'll see me running with you all a bit more during the season.

Happy running.

Coach Albert

Saturday, July 11, 2009

XC Camp at MSU

XC: I discovered a distance running camp will be held at Montana State at the end of the month. Easton will be going. It should be fun and I am hoping he will pick up some new running strategies, nutrition tips and training routines. I would encourage any of you to attend.
I hope your summer is going well and you are puting in some miles. I will be running the Missoula half marathon tomorrow and am very excited. (Danica will probably beat me:)

Remember, the season starts August 17 at 8:30 am. Be sure and have your physical completed at that time.

It was a good June...

GBB: Well we were able to play 9 games in the month of June, practice 8 times and hold a 4 day camp for up and coming Lady Broncs. This is not as much as we've done in the past but it was very productive and a lot of fun. Our summers are so busy anymore. The second week of June I was down in Billings to watch Ashley play in the Montana vs Wyoming game...the good guys won both!
We took 7 high school girls to Bozeman and stayed in Coach Faris' cabin and played 4 games in 3 days. We really shot the ball well but because of our lack of practce and because the other teams were so polished at this point we didn't fair well in the win column but the things we struggled with will be easy to correct during the season.
I'm sorry if many of you were unable to come. I got very little contact from players once our calendar had been handed out at the end of school. We took the players who were coming to practices. I know communication is difficult in the summer so that is why I'm now on Facebook and posting this blog...I hope it helps:)
Anyway, I hope all of you are getting to individual camps and puting in some driveway time. Remember it is aleays about skills...not playing in tons of games over the summer. I hope to see many of you commit to Fall shooting in the mornings before school. I am convinced this is why we played for the state title last year...and can again this year on our home floor!
I am headed to NBC individual camp at the end of the month with several 7th grade girls...great camp if you want to go.