Hadder picks up his 200th win at Vincent

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

VINCENT – It’s been a distinguished career for John Hadder and on Monday, Jan. 29, another career milestone was accomplished by the head coach at Vincent Middle High School.

As soon as the final seconds ticked off the clock in a 58-20 win over Fayetteville, Hadder was told to go to the center of the court for a special announcement.

With a baffled look of confusion on his face having no clue what was happening, he reluctantly and slowly walked to the middle of the Yellow Jacket in the middle of the gym as an announcement was made proclaiming his 200th win at the school.

His team then immediately ran out to shower him with congratulatory hugs and handshakes as well as a special basketball signed by them all to celebrate the special occasion.

“We’ve got good kids and I can’t complain,” Hadder said. “I’ve been blessed to have the opportunity I’ve had here and I’m happy where I’m at. Lord willing we’ll be able to find 200 more.”

In his ninth season as the head coach at Vincent, it’s a storied career that has featured two Final Four appearances and now nine straight sub-regional berths after doing so again this year.

Hadder has accumulated a total record of 63-4 in area play and 96-14 on the Yellow Jackets’ home floor and has yet to lose at home this season. But despite that success, he still thinks about how much more successful it could be as most coaches and players would.

“I’m proud of what we’ve done here, but honestly, just like other coaches, I think more about the ones I let slip away than the games I’ve won,” Hadder said. “We’ve been to four regional finals and won two of them and lost two of them, I think about the ones we lost all the time.”

Still though, the success is second to none as he is currently averaging 22.2 wins per season before this season has even come to an end. While the win against Fayetteville marked the Yellow Jackets’ 20th of this current season, that average us sure to rise before the conclusion of 2018.

Also impressive is the fact that he picked up his 150th win on Jan. 7, 2016, with a 48-44 win over Tuscaloosa Central, meaning he’s won 50 more games in just over two years.

With all of that success in mind, all Hadder could do was be excited for his guys after the game.

“We started all of our seniors tonight and got to play a lot of guys that don’t normally get much action, which is so nice to be able to do,” Hadder said. “They deserve it after all of the hard work they put in.”

The extra momentum lifted Vincent to a 40-0 lead at one point in the first half before Fayetteville hit a 3-pointer with 54.1 seconds left in the second quarter.

A hot clock in the second half led to less action and scoring but a dominant win nonetheless.

Stanley Cooper led the Yellow Jackets in scoring with nine points as they all came on 3-pointers in the opening quarter. Tyler Hayes had seven points and seven rebounds, while Keith Martin added five points and eight rebounds. Rashad Kelley posted an additional six points

“There are a lot of good coaches in this county and every single one of them would tell you that to be good you’ve got to have players and we’ve had good players,” Hadder said giving the credit of his success to his players. “We’ve had guys that have been willing to work and do what we ask them to do.”