• December 21, 2014

SOLID GAMBLE Cove senior guard helping Lady Dawgs make transition to another new coach

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Posted: Sunday, December 22, 2013 4:30 am

COPPERAS COVE — Brittany Gamble is constantly making adjustments. 

For the past four years, Copperas Cove’s senior guard has dealt with continuous change on the court and in the locker room. Preston Flaniken served as Lady Bulldawgs head coach when Gamble began her career, but Teresa Durham inherited the position prior to the guard’s sophomore season.

By her junior year, Copperas Cove’s transformation appeared complete, and the Lady Bulldawgs ended a two-year postseason absence. In the playoffs, Cedar Hill survived a furious fourth-quarter Cove rally to hold on for a 69-68 victory.

Then, Gamble was forced to start from scratch all over again as Durham surprisingly stepped down, opening the door for Eldridge McAdams to become the program’s third head coach in four seasons.

While the repeating process is frustrating, Gamble has grown to accept the constant change.

“It is kind of hard, especially in my senior year, because you have to rebuild,” she said. “You have to start all over again with a new coach. We didn’t know him, so we were kind of blind-sided. It has been tough, but we deal with it, we are working with it, and I’m pretty sure by the end of the season, we’ll (be adjusted).”

Despite everything, Gamble believes she benefited from the revolving door on the Copperas Cove head coach’s office, using each of the different philosophies to round out her overall game.

“People will get mad about the coaches leaving, but you have to learn how to adjust,” she said. “It has helped me adjust to having a new coach and playing with new people.”

Not only has Gamble accepted McAdams’ style, she thriving under it, averaging 15.5 points per game as the Lady Bulldawgs’ leading scorer. The total has increased significantly from last season, when she averaged 9.8 points as a complement to District 8-5A Co-offensive Player of the Year Shawnte’ Goff.

For McAdams, having Gamble’s presence on the team has helped make his transition a smooth one and her experiences are an invaluable asset.

“It is sad for her that she has been through those types of deals, but at the same time, she could have come in and just sat down on me this year,” he said. “She’s been battle-tested. ... She tries to keep us focused and keeps us afloat when things aren’t going our way.

“It is good to have that in her as a leader.”

Following the departures of Goff and Jasmin Johnson to graduation, Gamble quickly claimed a leadership role on the team, and thoroughly enjoys the responsibility.

“I felt like it was my spot to take over and get us where we need to go,” Gamble said.

So far, the Lady Bulldawgs have struggled to produce consistency under McAdams.

Gamble delivered a strong performance in defeat Friday, scoring 10 points to go with three assists, two steals and two rebounds, but the Lady Bulldawgs were unable to earn a victory, losing to Belton 52-40.

The loss gave Copperas Cove a pedestrian 7-7 overall record, while dropping its district record to 1-3.

After experiencing the rebuilding process several times during her career, Gamble knows success will come in time.

“We’re getting there,” she said. “We are trying to build what he is trying to make. We are going to get it, we are struggling, but eventually we are going to get it.”

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