Team goals more important to Poole
FERRIDAY — Ask Ferriday junior point guard Chante Poole what her goals are for next season, and you won’t find one that isn’t team-oriented.
“We want to have a better record than we did this past season, become district champs again and get a ring,” Poole said.
The Lady Trojans finished 19-9 this season with a district championship, and made it to the second round of the LSHAA Class 2A playoffs.
Poole led the way for Ferriday with 16.9 points per game, six rebounds per game and 5.1 assists per game, earning her honors as All-Metro Player of the Year. Although she said she felt honored to be selected, individual accolades aren’t as important to her as how the team performs.
“My accomplishments are second to the team,” Poole said. “I felt good about this past season, how we played together and worked hard as a team, and about doing what the coaches said.”
Despite not putting herself above any other player for Ferriday, Poole said she felt it was important for her to serve in a leadership role going into the season.
“It’s necessary, because the coaches can’t come out there and play for you,” she said. “You just have to step up.”
Ferriday girls coach Lisa Abron said Poole’s leadership abilities come naturally.
“All of her teammates look up to her,” Abron said. “We lost a couple of leaders from last year’s team, so we needed her to step up this year.”
And the main characteristic that makes Poole such an effective leader is her easygoing personality, Abron said.
“She’s very playful, and keeps us laughing,” Abron said. “It’s kind of rough during practice, because a lot of times girls don’t want to be there and work hard, but she keeps it fun, and keeps them motivated and loose.
“She also reminded them of what we did last year, and what they wanted to do this year. I really don’t have to say much to her about being a leader, she just does those things, and the rest fall in line with her.”
Despite a point guard’s main job being that of a ball distributor, Abron said Poole’s skill set allows her to score easily.
“She’s so quick, and she can handle the ball exceptionally well,” Abron said. “Most girls don’t have those skills, and when you do, it’s kind of hard for someone to guard you. If she gets by you, she’ll get a layup or a jump shot off the dribble. She’s going to burn you every time.”
As much as she enjoys offense, Poole said she’s not nearly as fond of playing defense.
“You have to move your feet more, and it’s harder to play than when you’re trying to score,” Poole said.
Abron, however, isn’t quite as convinced that Poole doesn’t enjoy defense.
“When we play against teams that have a go-to person, she’ll always volunteer to guard that person,” Abron said. “She may tell you she doesn’t like to, but in game situations, she does.”