TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY
By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets finished the 2012-13 high school basketball season with a 6-15 record, but that record doesn't indicate how close Patrick Robinson's squad was to getting over the proverbial hump.
Of the Yellow Jackets' 15 losses, 10 were by 10 points or less.
Looking at Williamsburg's record, it’s easy to dismiss the squad as a bad team, but Robinson is quick to point out that things aren't always the way they seem.
Considering the size of the school and the deep run the Williamsburg football team made in the playoffs, Robinson said the fact he didn't have a full team, much less enough to have a full practice, is something that slowed the Yellow Jackets’ progress this season.
“It's just something that small schools have to deal with in the fact that nearly our entire team plays football and you really don't get your squad until football season is over,” he said. “Our football team made a pretty deep run this year and it slowed us down as far as getting on the court and getting practice time in whereas every other team in our district was able to get started on time or even early.
“I’m not making excuses, but it’s just something that small schools that have to share talent have to do on a yearly basis,” he added. “I think if you look as the season wound down we were starting to play better as a group and that’s a result of time together on the floor.”
After knocking off Lynn Camp by 20 points to start the season, it looked as though the Yellow Jackets were in line to have a good year. Three straight losses to 13th Region foes set Robinson and company back, but they managed to pick up a pair of wins to even the record at 3-3.
A win in the opening game of Williamsburg’s Holiday Tournament on Dec. 27 was the last time the Yellow Jackets saw the win column until more than a month later when they got past Whitley County on Feb. 4.
Williamsburg dropped three of the final five games of the regular season before a loss to Corbin in the 50th District Tournament ended the season.
As they get set to regroup for next season, the Yellow Jackets have the luxury of returning every player on the roster from this season, including two of the top underclassmen in the 13th Region in Skylar Griffith and Corey Shelton.
The sophomore guards paced Williamsburg most of the season, with Griffith averaging 19.2 points per game and Shelton coming in at 17.6.
As a team, Williamsburg averaged 58.9 ppg, meaning the duo combined to account for 62 percent of the team's scoring.
Considering the firepower he'll have returning next season, Robinson said another year under the belt of this young group can only help them on the floor next season.
“Playing together is the best way to improve when you're a young team,” Robinson said. “Hopefully we can get around 20 or 25 games in over the summer and maybe get the guys to gel a bit as a team, which will hopefully bleed over into the regular season.
“I think with the guys coming back, the kids we'll get back from injuries and the young kids we’ll return, we should be a better team next season,” he added. “Hopefully because of that, we can come out and compete with the teams in our district and region.”