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November 30, 2012

Myers-Pate looking for shot, confidence

It's a confidence thing, really.

Guard [db]Anthony Myers-Pate[/db], a junior from McKinley Tech high school and Charis Prep, looked like he turned the corner with his jump shot last season, but after a rough start to this season, Myers-Pate is looking for answers.

"The first two games I didn't really hit shots, so that affected my confidence," he said. "I'm just trying to get back to my old mechanics. But I think it's mainly a confidence thing. If I know it's going to go in, it goes in."

However, he said he knows it doesn't take much to get going. It might just be one good week, game, or practice for him to start finding his stroke again.

"I've got to get the ball to go in the hoop from behind the arc a couple times," he said.

Myers-Pate generally plays the point guard position, currently occupied by senior [db]Velton Jones[/db]. Despite that, head coach Andy Toole will call on Myers-Pate's name consistently to be his first guy off the bench. Even though he doesn't start, Myers-Pate said he likes his role.

"I really get a lot of playing time so it's not a thing. Velton, he's a warrior, I watch that everyday so I just take little things from him everyday," he said. "I don't complain."

Jones has a reputation of being a physical guard who throws his body around the floor, a trait Myers-Pate said he also sees in himself. Because of the risk of injury Jones has throwing his body around the floor, Myers-Pate said he is always ready to go, just like the in the NEC championship game when Jones injured himself early and was less effective.

Right now, Myers-Pate said he would describe himself as a hard working, defense-first player.

"I'm more of a hard working player, trying to get everyone else involved mainly. Right now, my shot's not falling so I'm trying to do whatever I can do to help the team out, play defense, anything," he said.

Myers-Pate said when he comes in he likes to try and put pressure on the other team using more of a full-court press. He also said communicating with the younger guys is something he constantly is trying to do and is key in helping the team turn things around after a tough start.

"We've got to pick up the defensive energy. Right now as a team, we're not really hitting a lot of shots," he said. "We need to get in the gym, shoot more shots, and once our shots start falling, our defensive energy picks up, and we'll be right on track."

Myers-Pate is currently bothered by an ankle injury but did not seem concerned about missing Saturday's showdown against undefeated Ohio University. Myers-Pate said he's going to practice Friday and "see how it feels" but added there's "a good chance" he'll play Saturday.

A big game from Myers-Pate could help kick-start him and his struggling team. When it comes down to it, it's a confidence thing really.

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