The league features about 150 kids across 15 teams.
Jeff Ferguson doesn’t have any children of his own. Yet Ferguson, who moved to Ormond Beach from Atlanta over a year ago, is nearing the end of his third season as a head coach in the Ormond Beach Family YMCA’s youth basketball league.
“I just wanted to volunteer,” said Ferguson, who played college basketball at the University of West Georgia. “I just enjoy coming out here teaching the kids about the game.”
Ferguson’s team, which competes in the 14-17 age division, lost 41-29 to Southeast YMCA on the morning of Saturday, July 14.
The team’s primary ball-handler, Brandon Torres, scored the team’s first 24 points.
"When coaches coach correctly, they give kids the discipline they need. The only downside is you sometimes get coaches who try to live through their kids, and they’re yelling and screaming and taking the game into their hand. It takes away from the game. As long as you let the kids play and teach them like you’re supposed to, it makes for a great game.”
Stephen Telfare, Ormond Beach YMCA youth basketball coach
“It’s not like I’m telling him to shoot it every time,” Ferguson joked. “He’s got the most confidence, so he’s going to shoot the most. But I’m trying to get everyone involved. I’m trying to teach these kids to be confident and aggressive.”
There are about 150 kids in Ormond’s league across 15 teams, according to Sports Supervisor Justin Hampton. Age groups start as young as 4 and cap out at 17. Ormond plays against YMCAs from Port Orange, Southeast and DeLand.
The primary function of the league: preparing them for their next step in basketball.
“You’re preparing them for the next level,” said Stephen Telfare, who coaches a team in the 11-13 age group. “If you’re not teaching them right, they go to high school or junior high lost. As a coach, if you don’t teach them the fundamentals now, then they won’t catch up when they go into bigger leagues.”
Telfare’s team, which is 7-0 with one game left on the schedule, beat its opponent — a fellow Ormond team —36-13. The opposing team scored 7 points in the first three quarters.
“We should have scored 50 or 60,” Telfare said. “They kind of held it back today. They were a little sluggish.”