First Shot was founded in 2003 when Coach Andy Herzer felt the call to give back to underserved children in the community. The first summer camp was run in conjunction with the Boys & Girls Club of Rutherford County, and in 2006 it became a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
The program has grown and touched the hearts of children and underserved youth in Rutherford County ever since. Today, First Shot camps and programs teach kids both sports and life skills and help them grow their relationship with Christ.
As a youth basketball player in Garrett, Indiana, Andy was given the opportunity to succeed by a local sports editor and his wife who helped him go to a prestigious basketball summer camp. This was a turning point in his life and helped him go on to a successful career as a player and coach.
Because of his experience, he has a passion for helping children realize their potential and teaching them they can take what they learn on the court and be successful in their lives.
First Shot seeks to provide an opportunity for all children to excel in a safe environment. From academics to athletics, First Shot emphasizes learning and character development in all aspects of life. Most importantly, First Shot’s focus is towards building a stronger, more courageous spirit to face opportunities and obstacles that our youth confront every day.
Empowering children’s lives by positive reinforcement of Christ-like characteristics that will enable them to achieve the full potential in their generation.
Coach Herzer has been helping Rutherford youth learn basketball and life skills through First Shot since 2003. Most people know him as Coach Herzer from the 18 years he spent coaching the Division I basketball team at Middle Tennessee State University and UNC-Asheville.
Coach Andy grew up in Garrett, Indiana, and basketball has always been a big part of his life. A four-year starter at Garrett High School, Coach Andy honed his skills by attending camps, individual workouts and countless hours of solitary practice.
The turning point in his life came when local sports writer Roger Gordon and his wife Betty afforded him an opportunity to attend the highly touted Carolina Basketball School. Under the influence of future North Carolina coach Roy Williams, Herzer’s skills and love of the game continued to grow. The reward for his hard work and dedicate was a fulfilling college career at UNC-Asheville and a lifelong relationship with Coach Jerry Green and the game of basketball.
Coach Andy founded First Shot in 2003 to follow his desire for giving back to the youth of Rutherford County – inspired by the kindness and memories of Roger and Betty Gordon.
He currently is the driving force behind First Shot’s Board of Directors and an inspiration to all of the kids in the community who attend the camps.