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FCS Basketball Champions 2012

FCS Basketball Champions 2012

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Published by charlestrent
FCS Basketball Champions 2012
FCS Basketball Champions 2012

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Published by: charlestrent on Apr 12, 2012
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Division 1 Class A Basketball State
Friendship Christian School 
Congratulations Commanders
A Special Section to The Lebanon Democrat and Mt. Juliet News
Photo by:Dallus Whitfeld
2 Friendship Christian School 2012 Basketball Champions
Dr. Aleks Osipchuk MD, PhDPsychiatrist
You make us proud!
Dr. Aleks Osipchuk MD, PhD
Psychiatric Services, LLC
115 North Castle Heights Avenue,Suite 104,Lebanon, TN
While Friendship Christian Schoolwas in a ootball renzy last Novemberas the Commanders charged to their frststate championship, one man on the Pos-sum Town campus was getting more andmore antsy as FCS advanced through thebracket.Basketball coach Cleve Harris waswatching other hoops teams begin theirseasons in mid-November. But most o hisplayers were still donning ootball helmetsand shoulder pads or practice every dayand chalking up another playo victory onFriday night.“It was a little rustrating,” Harrisadmitted ater his team took the school’sfrst state basketball title. “Even at [ChristPresbyterian] we had great ootball teamsbut we never missed a ballgame. Cameclose, sometimes. And the frst year I leaveCPA and I’m here coaching – it happens.Last year, I got those guys in time [atera second-round loss], but I still got thempretty late.”
Basketball could followvolleyball and football tochampionship
Friendship’s volleyball team had justwon the state, ootball was about to andHarris had heard rumblings or months histeam could pull o the TSSAA hat trick –i he ever got his guys into practice.“I knew we actually had a chance to goall the way,” Harris said. “Beore schooleven started, I knew we had a shot. Sum-mer, I made sure we played the Black-mans, we played all the big schools that wecould fnd in the summer. We beat some o those schools and we got beat, but it wasall really close ballgames. That was thesign to show us we could actually do thisthing. That’s when the talk started gettingdeeper and serious.”But frst, a our-month pause or oot-ball season. Then our months became anextra week, then another and another. Itwould be fve weeks ater the scheduledstart o practice that Harris fnally got allhis guys in the gym.“Football is awesome and I’m notagainst ootball,” Harris said. “Matter o act, i we had to do it again, I wouldn’tchange a thing because o the fnal result.“But as a basketball coach, you eel alittle pressure.”Football coach John McNeal didn’thesitate to turn up the thermostat when,in the moments ater winning the ootballchampionship, he was asked by MurphyFair about basketball ollowing the ightpattern set by volleyball and ootball.“We haven’t told [Harris] that yet,”McNeal told Fair and a statewide PBS au-dience.“We’re just very good riends and we joke,” Harris said o the longtime ootballand baseball coach and athletic directorwho joined his sta as an assistant this
Football title
Sports Editor 
Chief Photographer 
The FCS cheerleaders encourage the Commanders to victory.
Friendship Christian School 2012 Basketball Champions • 3
Greg Landers • 615-758-7451
1767 N. Mt. Juliet RoadMt. Juliet, TN
Jim Landers • 615-443-1919
401 S. CumberlandLebanon, TN
 Monday-Saturday10:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
We Cater Anytime & Anywhere!We deliver & set up!Stay & serve if you wish!
Congratulations Friendship Christian Basketball 2012!! 
winter. “He’ll say, ‘I got mine, it’s yourtime’. It’s a little pressure, but it’s un andgames.“John’s awesome. He made a big di-erence sitting on my bench. He’s kind o the opposite o me. I’m intense. I coach theway I want the kids to play... Sometimesyou can get way above yoursel and John,with that really calm voice, would say‘We’re going to be okay’. And that bringsyou down to earth a little bit. That helpsme tons.”But McNeal’s November successlet Harris pacing the gym with the ewnon-ootball players on his roster as threegames were ultimately canceled. Only one,a District 8-A trip to Gordonsville, was re-scheduled.
Hoops seasonfinally starts
Finally, on Dec. 5,two days ater Friendshipdrilled Dresden 34-0 inthe BlueCross Bowl, Har-ris gathered his ull rosteron the Bay Family Sport-splex oor or its frstpractice. Westmorelandwas coming in the ollow-ing night to fnally tip o basketball season.“I had one true practice,” Harris said.“We beat Westmoreland [56-44], but wedidn’t play very well. It was terrible. I’mso rustrated. How am I going to get oot-ball out o these players? The hardest thingo having hal o your team play ootballand coming back to play basketball is themotivation part, getting them inspired.“You just won the whole tournament,and now I’m asking you to regroup andlet’s do this again.”Harris got some advice rom, o allpeople, his predecessor and coach o hisbiggest rival. Watertown coach Matt Brad-shaw had gone through the samething fve years earlier when the Com-manders lost the BlueCross Bowl. Armedwith a strong senior class, Bradshaw took his Commanders to a sectional the ollow-ing spring.“Matt was just great,” Harris said. “Hetalked about this is how you do it. They’regoing to be a bit slow. You can’t getrustrated.”
Trips to Clay and Lancaster prepCommanders for down the road
Next up was a trip to longtime nemesisClay County. The Bulldogs, who haveprobably handed Friendship more regiontournament losses than any opponent dat-ing to the 1980s, orced the Commanderson the sectional road the previous yearby beating them in the Region 4-A fnal.Harris believes had FCS won that game, itwould have gone to the State Tournamentin his frst season.As it was, the Bulldogs provided theCommanders their frst test o 2011-12.They still had lots to learn ater a 65-55loss in Celina.“They’re an outside-shooting team andthey had weeks to prepare,” said Harris,who cut his basketball teeth on the hoops-mad courts o Memphis. “I have to adjustas a coach to the teams in this region. Theylove the three-point ball. They can shootit and teams take tons more shots than wedo. My thing is we will apply pressure and
you just won the wholetournament
now i
m askingyou to regroup and let
sdo this again
Coach Cleve Harris
Hunter Anderson celebrates the win with teammate Andrew Wood (#3).

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