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Tritons Coach Rohde to Host Leadership Academy

<P>A pair of state championship winning coaches are holding a girls leadership camp this week at Notre Dame Academy.</P>
Sara Rhode has had her fair share of success on the basketball court as a player and a coach. The past couple of years, she noticed that some of today's generation of female athletes are lacking confidence and decision-making skills. In an effort to change that, Rohde is hosting a leadership academy this week at Notre Dame High School.

"I think nowadays girls are afraid to say things because they don't want to hurt each other's feelings or they might get mad at them,"  Rohde explained. "Just teaching them that it's ok to be a leader, stand up and say what you think."

"In order to have a successful team you need to have good leaders, kids need to be able to play roles. A lot of kids are lacking you know self confidence and it's not so much the skill part it's just the mental aspect of it," Kerry Janquart weighed in.

Janquart will be assisting Rohde at this week's camp. She also played division one college basketball and also earned a state championship as a coach when she lead Ashwaubenon to the title in 2006. Janquart says there is a difference in the athletes she's played with and some of the ones playing today.

"A lot of kids are looking for answers from people instead of finding them themselves, even the way they train, a lot of kids are going to specialized training versus just training in their backyard....I just think it's a combination of just, even in society kids aren't disciplined like they were and if you try to discipline a kid sometimes you look like the bad person. So just trying to get more self owned traits," Janquart said.

"Girls need to learn to do things on their own without the help from their parents and sometimes they're going to fail and that's ok. They need to learn it's ok to make mistakes because they're just going to grow from it and get better," Rohde explained.

The camp runs Monday through Wednesday and Rohde has gotten a lot of positive feedback from coaches around the state, so she's expecting a good turnout. There will be a basketball portion of course, but the three-day event is centered around leadership, communication and problem solving.

"Maybe blindfolded layups," Rohde said. "You have to teach your partner who's blindfolded, how to make a layup. So it's communicating, teaching them how to do something that's a little bit harder, so they're working together. It's not just going to be like the fundamentals of basketball, it's going to be more like challenge type things involving a basketball."

Rohde believes the key to success on the court is to improve who you are off the court -- the lessons learned this week are geared to make these athletes better student-athletes and citizens.

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