This shooting drill is from Arkanas Women’s Coach Mike Neighbors Newsletter. Might give you some thoughts on some ways to offer some variety in your practices.

This post was created when Coach Neighbors was at Washington.

Softball Plus One Shooting Drill

This series is more about the application than the actions. You need to make the actions fit your offense. I will give you one example that we use in each round, but the magic is in making them breakdown your offensive actions and simulate your games.

Diagrams created with FastDraw

softball2The first round is called SINGLES…. Thus the softball/baseball reference…

SINGLES refers to single made shot. We will set the number at how many players we have. So, everybody makes ONE shot in this round before we move to the next INNING.

In the above example, we break down our Dribble Drive Motion.

Our 1 player will ‘rack it lane’ for a game speed, game finish basket. After our 1’s get their SINGLE. The 1 will ‘drop 4’ to our post players for a game speed/game finish basket for their single. When all 11 players have a SINGLE, we move to the next inning.

Over the course of the year, we will change the actions to simulate the game we have ahead of us, work on areas we have been deficient in, or even introduce new concepts to our of-fense. We do inbounds actions, sidleline actions, and other special situations as well.


The second inning progresses to DOUBLES… now we introduce a second shot. The players must each make a game speed/game finish shot to complete the DOUBLE.

You can vary the number of DOUBLES needed to advance to the next inning as you see fit but we usually do 5-10.

This round brings in the element of timing and spacing and passing so that the two shots don’t interfere with each other around the rim.

Keeping with our Dribble Drive stuff, we would have the 1 rack it and finish and the 4 player fill behind to “make 2” get the rebound of a made shot to simulate an offensive rebound.

We would also have the 1 “drop 4” for the first make, then the 1 would fill to arc for a kick out pass and a 3 point shot to complete the double. We could easily run drags or open windows as well to simulate other dribble drive actions. Can also use this in a guard forward breakdown and just do actions for each position.

We will also had a penalty in this round. Any action that ends with ZERO makes is a Strikeout and takes one away from our total toward our goal. So, if our goal is 10 doubles and we have 5 at this point. The group goes and misses both shots, we are back to 4.

We also progress as the year goes on to have the players pass rather than the coaches so we can work on that skill as well.


We move to the third inning… now we need TRIPLES!!

Obviously adding shot attempts make it more difficult so you can vary the number necessary to advance as you see fit for your team and your situation…

This is also where you can begin to use your players to make the “extra” passes so that they can work on passing as well as understanding the timing so that balls aren’t all hitting basket at once. Learned this one from experience… they will understand timing/spacing better if you let them “figure it out” and “fix it”.

In our Dribble Drive example above. 1 would “rack it” and drop 4… 4 finishes. 3 rises to open window and receives pass from extra passer for 2nd shot. 1 continues to her fill spot and gets third shot from a pass from 4 player who has rebounded her own make.

Just like in softball/baseball TRIPLES are a little harder.

At this stage you begin to add a little bit of pressure on that last make. We always like this shot to be a three pointer or a hard drive pull up jumper. Keep mixing it up on people. I begin charting this in my head too. You’d be surprised how many years your teams BEST shooter isn’t your most CLUTCH shooter!!!


It gets real in the fourth inning… now you need HOMERUNs aka… Four makes in the breakdown sequence. The last shot adds some pressure and you can also begin to point out after the last person makes a few when earlier shots have missed, that ALL the shots are big and you NEVER no which one is the game winner… Shot value same in first quarter as it is in the 4th quarter…

Dribble Drive is easy to continue adding actions and is main reason I love this offense so much. It’s able to be broken down into simple actions that repeat and are hard to guard.

All the actions above are the same but we add the 2 player “locked” in the corner. We might also have the 3 player one dribble drive for a floater or mid range J rather than catch and shoot a three. You could also make your layup in the sequence be a Drop 2 back door cut and have the 1 player FILL to that corner for her shot.

The options really are boundless.

We usually try to get 5-7 Home Runs before getting to final stage!!!


This Plus One is the BALLGAME stage… since basketball uses five players on the court, we had to abandon our softball/baseball analogy… the PLUS ONE shot is the BALLGAME.

You will find your players yelling Dubs, Trips, HOMERUN after the earlier stages are completed… after this one they yell BALLGAME.

The last shot on this one truly will have GAME WINNER feel.

Five shots…five makes!!!
We usually only do ONE of these…

In above diagram, we simply add the 5 “drag(on)” screen for a 3.

You can also do this drill for a timed period. Sometimes we will put 10:00 on the clock and see how many innings we can complete. This puts some focus on operating under time but staying within yourself.
If you come up with ways to tweak this other than simply changing the shot sequence, let me know. We are always looking for ways to improve it.

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