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December 30, 2008 4:05 am

PHS basketball programs get shooting machine

Written by Tribune Staff

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Powell High School basketball player David Starcevich releases a shot during a recent practice at PHS. Starcevich was one of several players using the new shooting machine, which was donated by Kelly and Annie Brandt, Wells Fargo and the Powell Athletic Roundtable. Tribune photo by David Dickey

Christmas came early for the basketball programs at Powell High School in the form of a shooting machine.

The machine, which was delivered to PHS just before Christmas, features one-piece construction for easy setup, an adjustable net and a delivery system to launch the ball to awaiting shooters.

According to PHS boys basketball coach Troy Hildebrand, the recent purchase is already being put to good use and is proving to be another valuable way for teams at PHS to prepare for opponents.

“It allows players to get a lot of shots in a short period of time,” Hildebrand said. “Players can use it by themselves, or you can have a small group using it at the same time.”

Because of the adjustable net, Hildebrand said the machine promotes players using plenty of arc on their shots.

That, he said, should translate into a higher percentage of successful baskets. Once the ball is shot, it is collected in the net and channeled into the delivery system, which can be set in a fixed position. It also can be programed to swivel, forcing players to move to a different spot on the floor for ensuing shot attempts.

“This is something that will help us this season, and it will benefit all of our basketball programs in the future,” Hildebrand said.

The purchase of the machine was made possible by a number of people. Kelly and Annie Brandt, the parents of senior PHS boys basketball standout Ryan Brandt, started the wheels in motion. They donated a portion of the money for the investment, and Wells Fargo and the Powell Athletic Roundtable also jumped onboard and made major contributions toward the final purchase. The initial research surrounding the machine was done by their son.

“It will be good for the whole school and for future basketball programs here in Powell,” Kelly Brandt said.

“Hopefully, they'll get a lot of use out of it and wear the thing out.”

Hildebrand said the purchase is one that is greatly appreciated by those associated with PHS's basketball programs.

“We can't thank them enough,” Hildebrand said.