E.A. Sports Today

Kiker new Lady Cubs coach

New girls varsity coach moves over from four successful years with the junior high boys team

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

Alexandria stayed in house to find its new girls basketball coach, hiring Craig Kiker as the successor to Jordan Costner.

Kiker, 29, had been the Valley Cubs’ junior high boys coach the last four seasons. The 2005 Alexandria grad taught the fundamentals the boys took to the varsity program and promised the same approach with his new squad.

“That’s my plan, coach them like the boys and see what happens,” he said. “It isn’t any different; if they’re not going to work hard they’re not going to get any better.

“What I’m looking to do is get everybody on the same page and just build the program. The one thing I think that has made our boys program so good for so many years was we were doing the same thing at the junior high level they’re doing there. We were on the same page.”

Alexandria assistant principal Doug O’Dell called the hire “a home run.”

School officials had hoped to fill the vacancy before spring break to keep the program’s off-season plans in tact. They made the decision Tuesday.

In his four years with the younger set, Kiker’s teams won two County Junior High Tournament titles and lost in the championship game this past season.

“He’s an excellent coach who understands the fundamentals,” O’Dell said.

Winston Steen, who helped with the junior high girls the last couple years, will serve as one of Kiker’s assistants. The other is pending.

Costner stepped down shortly after the season. She will be an instructor at the new Champions Sports Academy in Alexandria.

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