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Raiders hold boys' basketball camp

Over 130 kids came out last week for the Hudson boys' basketball camp. Three different sessions were held from early morning to the late afternoon over the four-day span. At the end of the camp, players were given T-shirts as well as awarded with various prizes ranging from basketballs to Gatorades. Photo by Jace Frederick

"Probably the best part of the camp for me and our coaching staff is being able to build relationships and see these young guys come and get fired up about playing basketball and hopefully one day, being a Raider," said Hudson varsity boys' basketball head coach Jason Swavely.

Swavely coached over 130 kids at last week's boys' basketball camp. The camp was designed to teach players drills they could take home to help hone their abilities.

"We want to try to develop their skills. We want to try to give them skill drills that they can take home to their driveways and use," said Swavely, "We worked on passing, dribbling and shooting so they can develop their core set."

However, player development was not the main goal for the week.

"Number one is that they're having fun," he said, "If they do well with the skills then they get to play the five-on-five and three-on-three leagues we have set up, so that's kind of fun for them."

The camp was split into three sessions. Kindergartners through third graders played in the early morning, fourth through sixth graders competed in the late morning, and seventh through ninth graders hit the court in the afternoon.

Swavely spoke of the different coaching philosophies he applies to the varying age groups.

"In the morning session, you want to maintain some structure and discipline, but your focus is more on the fun and getting them to see each skill-set drill," he said, "(with the older grades), it's more big picture stuff. We're trying to get them to understand why they're doing it."

Swavely and his staff received assistance from some of the high school players.

"It's awesome. I've got a high school coaching staff here then we've got a lot of our varsity and JV guys out here. The little guys like that," he said, "They get a chance to bond with them and that's another awesome opportunity for us to just keep building our program."

He said his players benefit from being on the coaching side of the game for the week.

"When we've got a drill out here and they've got to teach it, it makes them better," said Swavely, "What we're teaching them, they get to teach the kids to some extent. It's a bona fide opportunity for them to get better at a drill and more detailed."

Swavely likes to use the camp as a way to develop all aspects of the program through the different age levels.

"A lot of these kids are going to be playing in the rec program, traveling program, or the high school program in the fall," he said, "A big part of this is not only teaching the kids things, but teaching the coaches who will be coaching them to understand what we want them to show the kids so they can be successful as they move through the program."

He said the biggest thing for kids as they leave the camp is to keep working on their games.

"That was the final message to these guys. When you leave now, basketball's not done. You have to go out and get that ball in your hands in your driveways and shoot and pass a lot."