SUAMICO — It's a new era for the Bay Port Pirates girls high school basketball team. They have a new coach and a lot of young players and they’re trying to build from the ground up.
“Gotta make sure we don’t take ourselves too serious, but we’re here to win,’ said Pirates Head Coach Adam Lemorande. “We gotta create a winning atmosphere and develop from there.”
An assistant for the squad last year, St. Norbert alum Adam Lemorande took over the Pirates program this year. The team finished fourth in the FRCC a season ago. As for his coaching style, according to his players: Straightforward, he tells it like it is.
“When I make mistakes personally, he always points me out and makes sure I fix them which is really helpful,” said senior forward Rhyan Coughlin.
This year, Lemorande and the Pirates will be relying on senior leadership. Center Ellie McDermid leads the way; she averaged nearly a double double last season and will be heading to play NCAA Division One ball at Bradley next year.
“A great attitude. Size. Strength. Phenomenal attitude. She’s going to have to be our anchor,” said Lemorande.
McDermid knows her new head coach well. They’re family friends.
“When he became the head coach I was super excited because I knew that he really loved the game and wanted to coach us and wanted to be here,” she said.
Lemorande has two daughters, one in eighth grade and one he was going to coach this year, Melia, who is just sophomore. But both have torn ACLs so they’re out for the year.
Lemorande was excited to coach.
“I took the job for all the girls,” he said. “I was excited for coaching my daughter. Hopefully they’re both healthy and they’re both here.”
It will be a building year for the Pirates, but Melia has hope that her dad can help lift them to big things.
“Our end up goal is to get to the Resch and next year we will be able to do that, if not this year,” said Melia Lemorande.
Now Lemorande is ready to see what his team has on the court.
“Eleven practices in, it’s time to play a game and see what we can do. I mean, we’ve been working from day one to day 10. I think it looks better. What it looks like in a game scenario, I don’t know,” he said.
The Pirates tip-off their season Tuesday night at home against Kaukauna.