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RVHS grads and sisters working together at Ashland

| February 21, 2016
Andi Daugherty

Andi Daugherty

Kari Daugherty Pickens

Kari Daugherty Pickens

ASHLAND – There might not be a Daugherty playing basketball at River View High School anymore, but just up the road in Ashland two of them are still together causing havoc on the court.

Andi Daugherty is a sophomore forward on the Ashland University Women’s Basketball team and her sister Kari Daugherty Pickens is helping lead the team from the bench as an assistant coach. Pickens graduated from River View in 2009 and Ashland in 2013 and Andi graduated from River View in 2014.

“I thoroughly enjoy coaching my little sister,” Kari said. “I love her very much, so getting to spend time with her on a daily basis is great. There are some cons to coaching her however. I know that I expect a lot out of her, but my heart also hurts for her when she’s having a rough game. Trying to keep an unbiased approach in every aspect is hard, but I have enjoyed the challenge.”

Coaching Andi, however, is nothing new for Kari.

“I started coaching when I was a senior in high school,” Kari said. “I coached with the AAU program NEO Swish and that was the first year I coached Andi. I coached that same team for five years, and then started coaching at Ashland the year after I graduated and have been an assistant coach ever since with a small seven month stint in Australia to play professionally. Coaching at the college level is not something I ever thought I would do. However, when I got hurt my senior year in college and had to miss eight games, I realized that coaching at this level is something I would love to do. Sitting on the sidelines and listening to the coaches’ talk made me want to join the coaching world.”

The oldest Daugherty sibling, Kristin also helped coach Andi in AAU and Andi feels blessed to still have the opportunity to learn from Kari.

“I have learned and am learning so much from her basketball wise along with outside of basketball,” Andi said. “She is a great coach and even better person. Sometimes it’s hard to separate our basketball lives from our sisterly lives. I can’t exactly yell back at her during a practice like most sisters are able to do. Overall though, I love having her here with me.”

Ashland also was a perfect fit for Andi for several other reasons.

“I wanted a college close to home,” she said. “Ashland is an hour and 15 minute drive from where I live, so it’s a very easy drive up 83 and 179 to get here. Ashland has a very beautiful small campus feel. Class sizes are small and that allows me to really get to know my classmates and professors. Basketball wise, Ashland was just the right fit. I already knew the coaches and system in place here, having watched Kari play here for two years. Ashland Women’s Basketball Program not only is very successful historically, but this program is so much more than just basketball. The Ashland Community has in a way adopted my teammates and me as their own girls. We have an amazing fan base of locals who care for us off the court and are our number one fans on the court. It reminds me of my fans from River View whom I love very much.”

Kari also felt a special bond with Ashland, which is why she stayed on as a coach.

“The culture of the team made me want to stay,” she said. “The people who were on staff and everything that the program stands for.”

Kari has enjoyed building relationships with the girls on the team.

“I feel like I can truly make a difference in the lives of the players that I coach,” she said. “Also, I love the game of basketball so going to work every day and training people in the sport that I love allows me to stay very connected to the game.”

With Andi, Kari would like to help her learn to extend her game to three point and pull-up range more, be aggressive and be a vocal leader off the court.

Most of all though, Kari is just happy to be able to share basketball with her family as she also was fortunate enough to play in high school with Kristin and spend two years with her at The University of Dayton.

“When playing college and high school athletics, sports can take up a huge part of your life,” Kari said. “Since basketball has often taken up a huge part of my life, I want to share that part of my life with the people I love the most. I love athletics. End of story. Whether it be volleyball, ultimate Frisbee, football, etc. The thing that sets basketball apart is that it is something that my family has shared since long before I was born and I enjoy getting to share it with them.”

Andi has heard people joke around that she was born with a basketball in her hands.

“It (basketball) has been something that my family has used to grow, heal, and connect for as long as I can remember,” she said. “Even now, my parents and younger brother make it to as many games as they can. My brother has yet to miss a game. We use basketball as something that brings us all together, we always have.”

Ashland is 25-1 and wraps up its regular season with a 5:30 p.m. game at home on Thursday, Feb. 25 vs Lake Erie. Andi is currently averaging 15.8 points and 7.3 rebounds per game.

“What I enjoy about basketball is that it gives me an opportunity to glorify God by displaying the talents He has blessed me with,” Andi said. “Basketball is just a sport. I will be the first to say it. There are so many more important things in this life, but right now in my life, I am able to use it to grow. It teaches me how to work hard, communicate with others, sore in the highs, struggle through the lows, and most importantly, carry myself with a certain character and dignity that hopefully reflects a lifestyle that I try and live.”

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Category: Adult, Sports

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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