After April Bryson’s resignation from West Henderson’s women’s basketball program, Athletic Director Jeff Smith did not waste any time finding a replacement. Smith announced yesterday that Chris Garner would take over the program this season.

“Coach Garner was hired late summer, early fall to be part of our girls basketball program to begin as part of our staff.” Smith said.

Garner has been working with the women’s basketball team at West in some capacity for a few years now.

“He’d already been working off season workouts with Coach Bryson with the girls already,” Smith said. “So he’d have familiarity with the girls that will be in our program. And he spent the last four years working with a lot of our players in travel ball.”  

Even though Garner already has experience with this program, the big change for him will be the introduction of having to coach the junior varsity team. He has never had to coach two teams at the same time.

“In the conversation we had, he said Coach Bryson made a lot of strides last year, so he’s already got a lot of things set up, not just in wins and loses but in fundamentals.” Smith said.

Garner says that he wants to continue the atmosphere of hard work and passion established by Bryson but that he wants to push it even farther. He has mentioned leaning hard into the offseason strength and conditioning practices started by Bryson but with adding his own flare.

Garner has already set a very high goal for his new program. He said that his goal for his first year was to have 15 wins, a strong improvement over last year’s losing record. Garner also said that he will be disappointed in anything less than winning conference in three years of coaching.

“He’s very knowledgeable, lots of excitement and has a lot of energy about him,” Smith said. So everyone’s rooting for him to succeed. Now he just has to meet expectations.”

By: Jackson Futch, Feature Writer

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