For Logan’s Shayna Gore, it’s been a learning experience so far.
But so far, she’s enjoyed the experience as head coach of the St. Albans High School girls’ basketball team.
Gore, a Logan High School graduate, just finished up her playing career at Marshall University last season.
It’s the first coaching job of any kind for Gore, just 23 years old.
So far, her Red Dragons are 1-3 and have faced a difficult schedule.
St. Albans most recently played cross bridge rival Nitro, a game the Red Dragons won 58-50 on Dec. 14. Class AA Nitro entered the game ranked No. 5 in the state. St. Albans was scheduled to host Musselman on Friday.
In the Red Dragons’ first four games, they faced teams with a combined 9-0 record.
Using a box-and-one defense on dynamic Nitro scorer Baylee Goins, the Red Dragons seized control in the second quarter and never let go in earning a confidence-building win both for Gore and her team.
“It’s awesome, that’s the first time I’ve seen my team put together four quarters, and if we play like that, we’re going to be fine,” Gore told the Charleston Gazette. “I’ve got chills just thinking about it.”
Gore has brought intensity to the sidelines and it’s been matched — at least in terms of effort — by her team.
Kiersten Eggleton tallied a double-double for St. Albans in the win with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Emma Parsons led the Red Dragons with 17 points. Goins tossed in 27 points and also had eight rebounds and four steals for the Wildcats.
“She’s always in the right spot, she rebounds, she does the little things for me,” Gore said of Eggleton. “She’s the glue of this team.”
St. Albans lost 53-42 to Winfield on Dec. 5 in the season opener. The Red Dragons then fell 56-36 on Dec. 9 at home to South Charleston and later fell at George Washington on Dec. 12.
Gore has stated her goal is to bring a high-paced, high-energy attack to both ends of the court.
For a team that traditionally has been more of a half-court-set kind of offense, the change has been and will continue to feature some ups and downs, at least early in the season.
“We’re fast enough — I have a bunch of soccer players and track runners,” Gore said. “When we get out, we’re dangerous and that’s what I’m trying to get them to do. But once I get them to do that, they think, ‘Oh, I’ve got to go super-fast,’ and they don’t know how to slow down yet. They have selective hearing. Now I understand why [Marshall] Coach [Tony] Kemper and [Logan] Coach [Kevin] Gertz and my dad wants to yell. [Gore’s players] say, ‘I can’t hear you,’ and I’m screaming as loud as I can. There’s no way.”