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Former Raven girls coach is now at helm of Lion boys basketball program
Auburn Mountainview’s new boys basketball coach is no stranger to Auburn.
For the past three years Terrence Johnson has been the head of the Auburn Riverside girls basketball program, a tenure that included a state 4A championship in 2010.
But after last season, Johnson said, he felt it was time to move on.
“I’d never coached girls before,” he said. “And it was an awesome three years and I became a much better coach coaching them. And I miss those girls a lot. But I kind of felt that my place was coaching guys again. I felt those girls could do better than what I could give them at the time.”
Johnson said he had no idea where he would land but tendered his resignation anyway, thinking he might help out as an assistant somewhere or maybe just spend more time with the family.
“I didn’t even know this job was open,” Johnson said. “I didn’t really know anything about it, but enough people talked to me about it I became intrigued. It was an awesome opportunity.”
Not wanting to miss his chance to return to the boys basketball ranks, Johnson applied and was hired as the head of the Lion program, replacing long-time coach Jon Price.
Now it’s all about taking the program to the next level and making some noise, not only in the South Puget Sound League 3A but also in the postseason.
“We’re trying to establish a culture that’s based on two things,” Johnson said. “One is just improving every day. Regardless of good or bad, we want to make sure we’re getting better. We want to have focus in the little things. And we think once we get these kids giving their best effort in the little things, the big things will take care of themselves.
“We’ve talked to these kids about being a champion, and that’s not about hanging a banner or getting a trophy. That’s a nice part of it, but it’s doing everything every day to improve themselves.”
Although Johnson’s plan for the program is long term success, it’s not inconceivable that the Lions could find their way into the postseason this year.
Auburn Mountainview boasts a strong core of returning seniors, including Domenic Rockey, JJ Lacey, Aarun Rumbaugh and Keith Green, in addition to some talented new blood, including 6 feet, 9 inch freshman post Tristan Miguel.
“I really think by the end of the season those four (freshmen) are going to help us have a chance to compete come playoff time,” Johnson said.
What matters is growth, not how good the team is, but don’t be surprised to find the Lions in the mix come postseason.
“We have a really good team,” Johnson said. “We’ve got 13 guys who are really a team.”