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New Woodbury boys basketball coach instructs youth campers at a summer basketball camp this week at Woodbury High School. (Bulletin photo by Jace Frederick)

Lesson One: Getzlaff gets first exposure at youth camp

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Lesson One: Getzlaff gets first exposure at youth camp
Woodbury Minnesota 8420 City Centre Drive 55125

Kent Getzlaff was in the gym at Woodbury High School this week with a whistle around his neck and a clipboard in hand working in his first official function as the Royals new head basketball coach.

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Only the people he was working with were 80 kids from area’s youth at one of Woodbury’s summer basketball camps.

“With a new coach, not knowing most of the kids and the families in the community, the best way to do that before the school year starts is to get them in here to camp,” Getzlaff said at the camp.

Getzlaff said the coaches and high school players who help run the camp attempt to work in a combination of fundamentals and making sure the kids have fun, while trying to encourage them to attend open gym sessions to play even more. The “fun” portion was evident throughout the camp on Thursday, even in an ill-lit gym after the power went out. Players participated in games and Getzlaff wandered around from court to court, making sure to interact with as many campers as possible.

“That’s the most important thing is just getting them excited. The easiest way for us to do that is to get them in here and around the coaches,” he said. “The big thing is just getting them in the building and letting them have some fun while playing hoops at the same time.”

Getzlaff described this as a “whirlwind” time for him, as he found a job in this district, finished up in his old district, and had to be ready to take on 80 campers this week.

“We’re ready to roll,” he said with a smile.

So far, from the kids, the early returns on the new head coach are a couple of thumbs up.

“He’s pretty good,” 14-year-old Will Jeffery said. “He’s cool, I guess.”

“He knows how to play basketball,” 9-year-old Cole Witherow added. “He’s a good coach.”

This week’s camp was the first of two that Getzlaff and Co. will hold this summer. The second camp will be held from July 21 through July 25, also at Woodbury High School.

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