“I built my talents on the shoulders of someone else’s talent”- Michael Jordan. This is exactly what the Girls’ Basketball team is working towards this year. In his second season as head coach, Travis Bivens is bringing a lot of experience and talent to the girls’ team.
Coach Bivens started his basketball career at Freemont High School, then continued at L.A. Trade Tech College for two years, and then a year-and-half at the University of San Francisco. Not only does Bivens bring the experience as a player, but he is bringing his expertise as a coach. Bivens started his coaching career at Highland High School, where he brought the Boys’ team back to back Valley championships in 1996 and 1997. That same year he had a traveling Nike team from 96-98. Bivens also spent some time at Bakersfield College as an Assistant coach. Bivens has coached some of the biggest names in Bakersfield to make pro such as Tyrone Wallace.
Bivens took time away from the sport as a coach, but stated that he was, “always involved with the coaches” in Bakersfield. He has now came back to bring his talents to Ridgeview High to help the girls’ team develop their talents. The girls’ enjoy what Bivens has brought to the table, “I like how he lets us play and does not limit us. It is a really free game that we get to play with him as coach,” states Point/ Shooting Guard, Kristen Everett. Journie Hayden, Guard, added, “I think he’s (Bivens) is a really good coach and one of the best that has ever coached me. He knows how to make the right decisions and I always trust his judgment.” Bivens is wanting to improve his player’s game by, “always working on mistakes, how to out coach the other coaches, and let the players play the game.”
This year the team is 10-7 overall and 2-1 in league compared to a 12-17; 4-6 record last year. Bivens states, “This year’s team is great. I think we have a chance to go far based on what they’ve learned.” Going into league both Bivens and the players feel that Tehachapi will be their toughest opponent that they have to face. “Tehachapi will be our toughest opponent in league, they execute their plays and strive to be the best,” said Everett.
For the players they feel that, “finding chemistry has been the toughest challenge, because it doesn’t come naturally,” says Everett, who came back from a knee injury last season. According to Bivens, this year’s team is young with only four seniors going into playoffs. The team will probably face a Fresno school, “because that is how ranks work,” stated Everett.
Learning from one experience and being an athlete carries a lot of responsibilities and weight. “Being an athlete comes with its own type of responsibilities; applying that to what you already have on your plate teaches a person how to work harder than most people,” says Everett.