When the final buzzer sounded, Chris Stubbs wasn’t exactly prepared for the moment.
The head coach of Platte County’s girls basketball program took a few steps to his right to partake in a postgame handshake with the Pirates’ opponent on Thursday, Dec. 6 at Platte County High School.
In that exact moment, it was just another victory, as the thought of a milestone win recently escaped him.
But, on this night, Stubbs took his Pirates through the handshake line in victorious fashion for the 200th time in his 15-year Platte County coaching career, following a 60-49 win over Ruskin.
“I knew it was coming up, but I forgot,” Stubbs said the milestone win after the contest. “As soon as (the public address announcer) said something I didn’t know if it was me or Jaycie (Stubbs, his daughter, who is nearing the 1,000 career-point mark). Then I knew it was me.”
After the two sides shook hands, Platte County players fled back to the home bench to find Little Debbie snacks they had prepared for the celebration. Stubbs, who at the time didn’t understand the significance of the very specific snacks, opted to enjoy a celebratory Honey Bun while collecting his thoughts.
“I really had never thought about it,” said Stubbs, who also coaches the Platte County track and field and cross country teams. “I know (Pirates boys basketball coach) Rick Hodge and I are kind of similar in that. I don’t know, it’s a weird feeling. It’s just a number. I’ve been very fortunate to have some really good basketball players come through here. But it’s an honor.”
His favorite part of unlocking this career goal? Well, there’s an easy answer here.
“Getting to coach my daughter is special,” he said of Jaycie Stubbs, a senior. “Most parents don’t get to see their kids as much as I do. I get to see her all day long and then after school, too. It’s been special. … Every game has been special.”
His daughter agreed.
“It’s cool to think about how many of those wins I’ve had with him. That’s the part that makes this sentimental,” she said. “I don’t think he gets enough recognition for what he does and how good he is for this program. So it’s cool for everyone that comes to the games understand how big of an achievement this is for him.”
To unlock the win, the Pirates, at times, made it interesting with Ruskin, who fell to 0-2 with the loss.
The Golden Eagles, who trailed by as many as 19 in the final minutes of the first half, chipped away at Platte County’s lead in the second half, cutting it down to 44-30 by the end of the third quarter and to as little as six points with 3:28 remaining.
“That’s been our problem,” Chris Stubbs said. “We were up 20 against Smithville and then they cut it to 12. I don’t know I think we were up another 20 against this team.”
A trio of seniors led the Pirates (4-1) in scoring. Hannah Valentine tallied 15 points, while Jaycie Stubbs and Shayla Kohler added 14 apiece. Freshman Amaya Blake, who fouled out with 3:28 left, chipped in nine points.
Senior Andrea Brown poured in a game-high 20 points for the Golden Eagles.
Platte County 58, Smithville 46
Two days prior the Pirates opened Suburban KC Blue divisional play with a 58-46 win over Smithville on their home floor.
Platte County came out firing with a 20-8 first quarter, thanks in large part to Meghan Amos scoring seven of her nine points in the frame.
The Pirates took the second quarter 17-14 to own a 37-22 lead at halftime. Jaycie Stubbs, who led Platte County with a game-high 15 points, connected on three treys to give her 11 points in the first half.
But the Pirates’ offense cooled off a bit in the second half, as Smithville held Platte County to 12 and nine in the respective quarters. The Pirates, meanwhile, held Smithville to nine and 15, respectively.
Valentine contributed 10 points and Blake chipped in 12.
The Pirates will play three games in a six-day span. Up first will be a road game to Riverside on Wednesday, Dec. 12, to play Class 5 No. 3-ranked Park Hill South.
Platte County plays the next day, at home, vs. Grain Valley in a Suburban Conference Blue Division game. On Monday, Nov. 17,