By: Larry W. Walthall

Member: FOWA

During the summer most people would not think about basketball. But some of our Charleston basketball stars play travel basketball. It seems there are not as many boys doing the summer travel, however I was amazed just how many of our girls really travel around, not only Arkansas but our neighboring states as well. This gives them time to sharpen up their skills and play against other girls they would never play against during the normal basketball season. “It is a way to make new friends and meet many challenges” says Emma Long of the Lady Tigers. Brook Groen an up and coming Lady Tiger star has been playing travel ball now for several years. She says it helps sharpen her skills. Don’t think travel basketball is just for students. Charleston’s Lady Tiger Coach Jason Rucker has a dual role to play. His daughter Peyton is another young and promising Lady Tiger traveling around the circles. It also allows Coach Rucker to see other coaches develop their teams and see a mixed variety of offensive or defensive strategies. So while some of the young basketball players are out laying by the pool and soaking up the sun, there are some Lady Tigers tuning up their basketball skills for the up and coming year. From what I have seen, Charleston should have an excellent year in basketball for 2017.


This past week Charleston was the host of a Boys Basketball Team Camp. Schools attending were:

Senior High ` Senior High JV

Charleston Charleston

Mena Mena

Bigelow Dover

Dover Elkins

Scranton Scranton

Muldrow Clarksville



Junior High Varsity Junior High JV

Charleston Charleston

Mena Mena

Elkins ` Elkins



Charleston’s Boys basketball coach B J Ross said, “This gives us an additional way to hone up our skills and test certain plays. It also allows the boys to work together as a TEAM, more togetherness. We practice new zone plays and work very close on the man-to-man defense.”

Looking at the list of teams that came also has you playing against teams you do not play against in a normal season. It is a learning curve for the boys both on offense and defense. Coaches can stop play and correct any mistakes or capitalize on positive moves players make. It is a summertime basketball education. So if you are a Charleston Tiger basketball fan, boys or girls, you will be in for another excellent year of Tiger basketball. GO TIGERS