Ponce De Leon not suffering any letdown after back to back title runs

Published: Dec. 23, 2022 at 9:25 PM CST
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -The Ponce De Leon girls basketball team is currently working towards a possible third straight 1A state championship. And so far this season, so good. Coach Brad Alford and company with 9 wins in 10 games leading into the Christmas break. The team’s only loss to 6A Niceville. Otherwise it’s all wins. Alford with just four returning players from last year’s team, so the players on this year’s team as hungry as ever to win the title and keep the winning tradition at Ponce De Leon going!

”So I think in the last couple of years we’ve lost 11 or 12 players.” coach Alford explained during a Zoom call this week. “Complacency is definitely something that we preach constantly. And we try to keep the girls in that driven mindset. And not the goal mindset. And again I use the analogy of a diet, because once you said goals you kind of relax once you meet the goals. So we don’t want to set goals, we want to kind of live in that driven mindset. Understanding that there’s always something I can do.”

To say this team has set a standard for winning is an understatement, as evidenced by the two titles. And the team’s record the three previous seasons, an impressive 66-7. Again this year’s team carrying on, with that 9-1 mark, despite just the four players returning from last year’s squad. Coach Alford telling me what he loves about this team.

”I love their approach. They haven’t allowed the complacency to sit in. They understood that they can’t be last year’s team, or the year’s before. They’ve got to create their own identity. But most importantly how much they love each other. And to me that’s probably one of the key ingredients to having sustained success. Is having girls that really appreciate what everybody brings to the table. And they’re not jealous of anybody, they genuinely love and support what everybody brings.”

The Pirates shoot the threes with success and play fierce defense, that’s their M.O. They are off through the New Year, they’re back at it on the 5th when they travel to face a Chipley team that’s 13-2.