Hire steps in as Demons’ interim hoops coach
GRAND JUNCTION – Going in, Greg Hire knew his appointment to the job was temporary. Yet that hasn’t lessened his energy toward accepting the role as Glenwood Springs High School’s interim boys basketball head coach for the 2006-07 season.Since getting the nod as the Demons new coach, Hire, a volunteer assistant under Kevin Flohr the past two years, has gotten comfortable with the assignment. The long-term plan, according to GSHS athletic director Steve Cable, is to have a full-time teacher become head coach in 2007-08.The opportunity to work with the returning players from last year’s varsity squad influenced Hire to take the post. “I knew the kids and what they were doing. We have a lot of returning seniors,” he explained during a break at Mesa State’s team camp in Grand Junction on Tuesday. “I wanted to help them have a smooth transition through coaches because we have seven returning varsity players, and I just wanted to help them through that transition.”Like Flohr, Hire is a walk-on coach. Between summer league games, team camps and open gyms, Hire is the sales manager at Berthod Motors.”I call that my first profession,” he said of the job at the local auto dealership.While Hire’s discovering that balancing both positions is “difficult,” he said having a strong support system for backup has eased the pressure at both jobs.”You can’t do it all on your own. And if you think you’re going to, you’re a fool. You really need the support group and the cast,” he said. “At work I have very good owners in the Gerbazes, who own Berthod Motors. They’re very lenient with covering for me and allowing me to do this for the kids,” Hire said.Hire also has a deep group of assistants to rely on to help coach.Paul Salmen, who coached Glenwood’s junior varsity and freshman teams in past years, is returning to the bench. Gary Hansen, who has also seen duty with both younger squads, will be assisting, as will John Pettitt, another of Flohr’s assistant coaches.Hire said plans are to keep most of last year’s offensive and defensive schemes intact with a few tweaks tossed in. “We’ll try to push the ball a little bit more. I emphasize ball movement and pressuring the defense by attacking,” he said. “I don’t think you’ll see Glenwood walking the ball up the floor at all. We’ll always be attacking so that the opposing team can’t set up a defense on us.” Overall, Hire said the Demons have adapted to the change in coaches well. “It’s been a very smooth transition I think,” Hire said. “The kids already know who I am and what I’m all about.”
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It was a statement game featuring the two best boys basketball teams in the 4A Western Slope League on Saturday afternoon at the Chavez-Spencer Gymnasium in Glenwood Springs. And, just like in the old western shootouts, it was the Glenwood Demons who had spoken the loudest when all the dust had settled with a key 58-44 win over the Steamboat Springs Sailors.