The Goose Creek Memorial girls basketball coach has landed its third head coach in three years, but this one brings quite a bit of credibility to the position.
Jamila Ganter was tabbed to lead the program – that went 21-15 in 2019-20 and advanced to the Class 5A area round of the playoffs – after a run of coaching at the NCAA Division I collegiate ranks and being a part of a successful run at the high school ranks previously.
This will be Ganter’s first stop as a head coach pending board approval. A letter of intent has been agreed upon.
“I am teaching the game of life regardless of the level I am at,” Ganter said. “That’s what we are doing every single day, on and off the court. The biggest honor is to be a head coach in my home state. It’s always exciting to inherit a team that shows that they understand what it takes to win, has the support of a great community, administration and great staff.”
Ganter is familiar with the program enough to know she believes she has enough pieces in place to build a strong foundation off the bat.
“We are going to be a culture-driven team and we are going to play hard and compete,” Ganter said. “I like to play fast and to defend.
“The culture will reflect on and off the court. Teams that have great cultures usually have great success. It’s something you have to establish on day one and has to be understood. That is first and foremost.”
Tactically, Ganter believes in making sure her players can fit a system that benefits their talents, so she will need time to evaluate the players’ various skill sets. That may be hard being locked down during a COVID-19 pandemic.
“It will take some time to put a plan together, but it will definitely get done,” she said. “The system we put in place is going to work because it’s going to fit the players that we have.
“Right now, it’s about the relationships that you form. We can take a lot of positives out of the situation and communicate with the kids. It’s not about what we are running and doing on defense, it’s about getting our team together.”
Ganter will teach physical education at GCM.
“We are excited to have coach Ganter and I believe her experience and track record will be a tremendous asset to our school and program,” GCM athletic coordinator Shannon Carter said.
Ganter spent the last four seasons as an assistant coach with the Houston Lady Cougars program, which included a 20-13 record and WNIT first round defeat at South Dakota in 2018.
Prior to Houston, Ganter was an assistant at Stephen F. Austin, in the Southland Conference, taking a primary role in recruiting with special attention to the Houston area. While with the Ladyjacks, Ganter helped lead the team to back-to-back Southland Conference Championships in 2014 and 2015 as well as postseason appearances in the WNIT and WBI.
Before entering the collegiate ranks, Ganter was an assistant coach at Texarkana Liberty-Eylau – her alma mater - and was a part of the staff that won the 2010 3A state girls basketball crown.
As a player, she was a member of the Texas A&M program from 2003-2006, appearing in 79 games before ultimately becoming a student assistant and intern for the Aggies in 2007-2008.