Founder & Owner

samuelSamuel Hines
Owner, Basketball Coach

Coach Hines is a native of Wilson, North Carolina.  He played professional basketball overseas for 16 years in various countries, including Italy, France, Israel, Switzerland, Cyprus, Poland, Venezuela, Argentina, and Mexico. Among the numerous accolades that Coach Hines received during his career was his induction into the Hall of Fame in 2006 in Cantu, Italy. Recognizing his love for children early in his career, Coach Hines began coaching young athletes while still a player. He held his first youth basketball camp in 1999 in Cantu, Italy. Since that time, he has continued to pursue his passion for coaching. In 2000, Coach Hines started Up with Kids Sports, Inc. (UWKS), now referred to as Hoops N Sand (HNS). Through HNS, Coach Hines has provided private and group coaching, camps and clinics to numerous young athletes, and has introduced basketball to participants in HNS after school enrichment programs. Additionally, Coach Hines has developed and coached his own son’s basketball travel teams and was formerly the Assistant Varsity Boys Basketball Coach at Mt. Pisgah Christian School, the Assistant Varsity Boys Basketball Coach at Cambridge High School, and the Head Coach for Cambridge 8th grade Boys’ Feeder Team.

Click here to download Samuel’s resume.

Click here to view a video of Samuel playing high school basketball.





Carla McGhee

Advisor and Board Member

Coach McGhee is a native of Peoria, Illinois. As a highly accomplished international athlete, WNBA Legend, Olympic Gold Medalist, Hall of Famer and former women’s collegiate basketball coach, Coach McGhee is a valued asset to the team at Hoops N Sand. Following a 4-year career at The University of Tennessee, during which the Lady Vols brought home two national championships, Coach McGhee played professionally for ten years in Germany, France, Turkey, South Korea, Spain, Italy and Greece. When the WNBA was formed, Coach McGhee played five years with the Orlando Miracle. Upon retirement from her playing career, Coach McGhee embarked upon coaching in women’s collegiate basketball. She has held various coaching roles throughout her ten years of collegiate coaching at Temple, Auburn University and University of South Carolina. In addition to conducting classes and clinics at Hoops N Sand, Coach McGhee will provide private and small group coaching through her business, More to Hoopz.




Coach Nehemiah Solomon
Assistant Director, Coach and Trainer

Coach Nehemiah Solomon is a native of Valdosta, Georgia. He is a graduate of Valdosta State University, with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, with a concentration in Early Childhood Education. Nehemiah has a passion for education, sports, and children with a competitive spirit. He worked in the Valdosta City Schools system for 8 years, while also working with the youth sports programs in the city. He participated in and coached intramural volleyball, football, and basketball at Valdosta State. He joined the HNS program in 2014 as a coach and trainer. He helped coach the 7th grade team to the playoffs in his first year with the program. He now coaches multiple teams at Hoops N Sand, and offers individual and small group training.



The Coaches

IMG_3363Mary Nixon
Lead Basketball and Volleyball Trainer


Click here to view Mary’s resume.





IMG_3349Joe Pennisi
Lead Basketball Coach and Trainer

Coach Pennisi began coaching with Coach Hines while in a high school work based learning program. After high school, he attended the University of North Georgia and completed an internship at HNS. Coach Joe continues to help coach the after school programs, camps, and events at HNS. Witnessing kids develop and being a contributor to their growth is Joe’s favorite part of coaching.


Aja Garland-Houston
Volleyball and Basketball Coach

Coach Garland-Houston is a native of Montclair, New Jersey and was raised in Atlanta, Georgia. Her love for sports and health education grew and inspired her to pursue a degree at Hampton University (Hampton, Virginia) where she received a Bachelors of Science in Health and Physical Education. Over the past year Coach Aja has been coaching basketball, volleyball, and track at the Galloway School in Atlanta, Georgia. She has also been working alongside Coach Hines at HNS, working with the youth basketball teams and coaching consistent clinics for youth volleyball. Her passion for teaching sports grows everyday and she shares her belief that hard work really pays off with her students.




150659_10200394157999554_1436631944_nCassie Prausa
Volleyball Coach

Click here to view Cassie’s resume.