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YMCA program lacking coaches

By By MARY-ALLISON LANCASTER – Managing editor
Didn't make a New Year's resolution and still looking for a good one? Consider giving up two nights a week by becoming a basketball coach at the Brewton YMCA.
Chris Beasley, sports and aquatics director at the YMCA, said that he is still scrambling to find coaches for the upcoming season. He said that at least 12 coaches are needed now.
Practices will be held Mondays and Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
In the past, Beasley said the YMCA typically has four teams per age division. Kids in grades one through 10 are eligible to participate. On Tuesday, Beasley said that around 45 kids had signed up for the Youth Basketball program.
In order to accommodate parents who were preoccupied during the holidays, the registration date has been pushed back a week, he said. Late registration will now end Tuesday, Jan. 10.
Basketball, the ideal winter sport, was originally invented at the YMCA. In December 1891, Dr. Luther Gulick had teacher James Naismith formulate a winter game. In a matter of weeks, Naismith was hanging peach baskets to the bottom of a second-level running track and displayed 13 rules on the wall and taught the game of basketball at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield, Mass.
Shortly following, the first basketball program was developed at the University of Kansas.
Today, an estimated 375,000 kids play basketball at local YMCAs. Beasley said that if he doesn't get enough coaches to sign up, YMCA staff will have to pull away from their responsibilities and focus on the program. Beasley said that he hopes it doesn't come down to that.
Along with coaches, Beasley said that he is also looking for anyone interested in becoming an assistant coach. He said he prefers those interested in coaching to be 18 or older. The assistant coaching jobs, however, are open to younger students.
Practice begins Jan. 16-20 with the season picking up on Jan. 23 and ending Feb. 24. Anyone interested in becoming a coach or assistant coach should contact Beasley at the Brewton YMCA at 867-YMCA (9622).