Yellow Jackets in training at annual basketball camp
Porter Rhoades, daughter of Mike Rhoades, who coached at Randolph-Macon and is now an assistant to Shaka Smart at VCU, participates in a dribbling race during the youth basketball camp.
As the 34 campers at the 2013 Randolph-Macon Elite Girls Basketball Camp returned from lunch break last Wednesday, 8-year-old Haley Durocher made a beeline for a free ball and basket. One of the shorter camp participants, she began practicing shots from several areas, making many with ease.
“She got a lot of help from her,” Durocher’s mother said, pointing to older sister, Madison.
The Durocher family talent, coupled with multiple years at the R-MC camp, could pay off dividends in the future. When asked if she might suit
Randolph-Macon College head coach Carroll LaHaye works her station teaching defense to youth campers.
up and play for Randolph-Macon some day, Haley just shrugged her shoulders. She just wanted to get back to shooting the basketball.
That type of enthusiasm permeated the Brock Center as assistant head coach Ana Litton directed the four-day camp in Ashland, aided by head coach Carroll LaHaye, and many members of the Yellow Jackets women’s basketball team.
The bottom line, according to Litton, for a kind of camp like this, is fundamentals.
“I think they learned a lot and showed a great deal of improvement each day. Our biggest hope is that they will take this knowledge and continue to grow as basketball players. We hope they will continue to play and work hard on their individual game and fundamental skills. The hours spent working individually on fundamentals is what makes great basketball players,” Litton said.
Among the players in attendance was a surprise, a player very familiar to Ashland/Hanover fans. Taylor Huber, the all-time leading scorer in Patrick Henry basketball history, has officially transferred to Randolph-Macon from Utah Valley University.
LaHaye confirmed that Huber, by transferring down from a Division I to a Division III school, will not have to sit out a season and will be ready in November with two years of eligibility remaining. Huber was a “team” leader of a group of campers for various events and contests, as was PH grad Katie Anderson alongside Khajae Hester, Sarah Parsons, and Lauren Vugteveen.
Litton was thrilled with the bonding she saw during camp week.
“I definitely think that it was beneficial to both our team and to Taylor for her to have been a staff member this past week. It was great to see them all finally together to help build that camaraderie,” Litton noted.
LaHaye is also excited about incoming freshmen, including two from Hanover County. Stephanie Staples, a recent Atlee graduate, has signed on with the Yellow Jackets, while Lee-Davis inside force Kori Hughes made her intentions official a few weeks ago.
Staples knows a thing or two about Randolph-Macon, LaHaye, and summer camp.
“Stephanie always came to our camp as a young girl,” the head coach pointed out.
Surveying the young women filling six basketball courts in Ashland, it’s not hard to see how a future crop of Yellow Jackets is already forming, growing, and ready to sting the competition one day.