On Friday nights, after the Corona del Mar High boys' basketball team plays, the coaching staff gathers at a local sports bar. The coaches have been meeting there for four seasons.
Mike Flamson, one of the assistants, owns the place, and it so happens to be "The Place" is the name of the establishment. The Place is where Coach Ryan Schachter said he and his assistants talk about the team in the after hours.
"That's all we do," Schachter said with a laugh. "[We] talk a lot of smack on all the players."
Last week, the coaches went more than once after a game, on a Tuesday, on a Friday, their usual night, and on a Saturday. The one player they discussed a lot is the owner's kid, Blake Flamson.
The young Flamson plays for CdM, and the coaches praised his play after all three games. There might have been a toast or two for Flamson, as the senior guard contributed to the Sea Kings going 3-0.
The week began with the toughest opponent, Woodbridge, the first of two straight Pacific Coast League road contests. The week concluded with the Battle of the Bay rivalry game at Newport Harbor.
Flamson performed every time, scoring in double figures, the only CdM player to do so last week. He averaged 15 points per game and he turned in his biggest effort against Woodbridge, the preseason league favorite.
Twenty-two points are how many Flamson finished with, by far his best output as a Sea King. The way the night started for Flamson, it seemed unlikely CdM could count on him to produce offensively.
Flamson didn't look to score in the opening quarter, only making a layup on a breakaway. After CdM trailed by six after the first quarter, Connor Sage, a teammate, went to Mike Flamson on the bench.
"Did you tell Blake not to shoot?" Sage said to Mike.
"No," Mike said.
"Well, he hasn't taken [more than] a shot," Sage said.
"Yeah, I know that," Mike said.
Mike then pulled his son aside and ate into him, telling him to be more aggressive. The message is one Schachter has often yelled at Blake.
Now, Blake's father delivered it.
"I think Woodbridge was the first game he ever really told [Blake] anything like that," Schachter said of Mike, who played basketball at CdM and graduated from the school in 1978. "I can't repeat what he said. Those words can't be printed in the newspaper."
Whatever Mike said to his son worked.
Flamson came out in the second quarter all fired up. He attacked and recorded nine points in the quarter, and CdM took a 32-31 lead into halftime.
In the fourth quarter, CdM received much of the same production from Flamson. He put up seven points in the quarter and CdM managed to hold on for a 64-63 win.
Three days later, the Sea Kings survived another league contest. They edged University, 67-62, to stay undefeated in league. Flamson finished with 10 points, one of four CdM players in double figures. The balanced attack shows these Sea Kings are different from the previous seven teams Schachter has guided at the school.