695HOOPS WHERE IT'S ALWAYS ALL ABOUT THE GIRLS
St. Paul's head coach Jim Stromberg is one of the most tenured and experienced coaches in the region. We spoke to Coach Stromberg about a number things including who he likes in the IAAM B and C conferences in a recent one on one.
695: Where did you grow up?
Coach: I lived in Irvington through 8th grade and I moved to Ellicott City after grade school.
695: Did you play ball growing up?
Coach: I played baseball, football and basketball through grade school and in high school at Mt. Saint Joe's I ran cross country and track and played basketball all four years.
695: Tell me about your coaching career...
Coach: I started coaching at Mt. Hebron high school in 1980 as an assistant under Chuck Monninger. From 1982 to 1995 I worked with the girls program at Mt. Hebron with Dave Greenberg and Brad Rees. From 1995 to 2001 I was the varsity head coach at Seton Keough and the past 13 years I have been the head coach here at St.Paul's School for Girls.
695: Who has been the biggest influence on your coaching style and philosophy?
Coach: A number of people actually. My high school coach, Coach Nieberlein, probably the most knowledgeable of any coach I have been around. The two coaches at Mt. Hebron, Dave Greenberg and Coach Monninger were really good at building relationships with their players and certainly got their players to play hard all the time. Lastly, I believe people are just finding out what a wonderful coach Brad Rees is a McDonogh.
695: What do you do to improve as a coach?
Coach: To me the best place to improve is at local high school and college practices. The Baltimore area is filled with so many coaches that do a great job day in and day out.
695: What is your biggest pet peeve as a coach?
Coach: Kids and teams that don't give their best effort at all times as well as players that don't compete on every play.
695: What do you think of the overall direction of girls basketball in this area?
Coach: Being around basketball in Baltimore my entire life I would have to say the athletic talent is much deeper, however skill development is not as good. Kids are playing more games and less work on their individual skills.
695: I have to agree with that.
695: Who do you like in the B and C conferences this season?
Coach: In the B conference I believe a number of teams have a shot at the championship including Indian Creek, Severn, St. Mary's and Notre Dame Prep. In the C conference St. Timothy's, Park and Catholic should be there at the end.
695: What are the biggest challenges you face with the program?
Coach: Like many schools kids are choosing to spend their time concentration on one sport and playing that sport year round. The percentage of three sport athletes in high school compared to the past is different.
695: Talk about this year's team...
Coach: This year's team is made up of three seniors, one junior and eleven sophomores and freshmen. There is certainly going to be a learning curve but I expect that we will compete on each possession and give our best effort at all times.
695: What else do you do besides coach?
Coach: I am the athletic director here at St. Paul's School for Girls.
695: Who is on your staff with you at St.Paul's?
Coach: I have a great staff. Paul Ribb the former varsity coach at Garrison Forest and the founder of Maryland Grizzlies AAU program. Tricia O'Neill whose two daughters played here at St.Paul's. Mercedes Robinson, a former player at Davidson University and a graduate of St.Paul's. Kyle Barton is assisting at all levels of our upper and middle school basketball programs.
695: Thanks for your time and good luck this season.
Coach: Thank you.
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