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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
February 6, 2003     Hays Free Press
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February 6, 2003

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Page 12 The Free Press February 6, 2003 HAYS CISD - Hays High School girls basketball coach Donny McDonald will be sitting at Lee High School in San Antonio Friday night quite interested in the outcome of a game between Converse Judson and San Antonio Reagan. The loser of that District 26- 5A playoff game will play Hays in the f'irst round of the UIL girls basketball playoffs. But who should McDonald prefer? Judson is 24-6, but plays a deliberate style that should be to Hays' liking. Reagan is 17-12, but plays the assertive sort of defense that's been known to cause Hays fits. It's pretty typical of the questions facing the Rebels as they head to the playoffs after two consectitive advances to the Region IV championship game. The Rebels weren't prepped by especially tough competition during the last week of the regu- lar season, which ended Tuesday night with a 58-19 home court win against Akins. Last Friday, the Rebels played in another blow-out, though at least with an interesting twist. When the Rebels arrived in Seguin last Friday, they found that the referees weren't going to make it to the gym. So, two Seguin athletic officials refereed the game. That said, it may come as little surprise that the Rebels led at halftime by only 26-24, and only because Isa Mendoza made a shot at the buzzer. But an interesting thing hap- pened at halftime. When the coaches left the room, the team set a goal. "They decided they were going to hold (Seguin) to ten points in the second half," McDonald said. "We held them to eight," With that, the Rebels coasted to a 52-32 victory. But that kind of story is done for the rest of the year. The Rebels will play no more teams on the order of Seguin or Akins. Now, it's on to teams in the top half of their districts, and the games promise to get a little tougher with every round. After Judson and Reagan play Friday, McDonald will meet with the losing coach to decide the time and place for the first-round playoff game. By the time the Rebels play their prac- tice game against Llano in Gonzales at 1:30 p.m they will know the plan. For now, McDonald is trying to keep the team sharp through practice, and healthy from a flu that's been going around the high school. "They're in good spirits and they're happy," McDonald said of his team. "But I don't know if antyone knows what to expect. We have a lot of players who haven't been to the playoffs." Hays post Melissa Dahlstrom and guard Dara Schmidt both are veterans of the Hays teams that have gone deep into the playoffs the last two years. Point guard Amanda Swofford and post Laura Leisering both played in the playoffs last year. Otherwise, it's going to be a whole new experience for many of the play- ers. McDonald said the Rebels should be boosted after promot- ing freshman post Anna Breyfogle from the junior varsi- ty, which finished the season 23- 4, including a 14-0 performance in the district. However, post play hasn't been a problem this year for Hays, even if they haven't developed a scoring threat under the basket. The problem for Hays has been presented by pressure defense. And that figures to enter into the equation Friday, if McDonald happens to find him- self hoping for a first-round game against a 23-4 team that plays slowly, rather than against the 17-12 team that plays pres- sure defense. Hays guard Jamie Reeder looks for a pass in'a recent game against Westlake. (photo by Bill Peterson) BY BRENT STRONG Staff Writer Hays CISD---W'mning only two of twelve dislrict games can really get a team down. The way the Hays High School boys basketball team looks at it, they've still got some basketball to play. The Rebels face district leader Bowie this Friday with nothing to lose and an upset up their sleeve. "We'll give it a shot," Hays head coach Poe Shelton said. ''We've played pretty well for all but one quarter in every game. As long as our defense holds up and we hit our shots, we'll be in it." Hays was "in it" Tuesday night against Akins, but a-late rally put away the Rebels. Leading 39-38 late in the second half, Akins hit a three. Then, Akins hit a long jumper following a Hays miss and defeated the Rebels 44-38. Shelton said his team really didn't have a low-scoring quarter during the Akins game and played well throughout. "Our effort's been great all year," Shelton said. "People in the district don't take us lightly." Shelton moved up 6-foot 5- inch sophomore Austin Claemer to varsity to prepare him for the feel of varsity games. Next year, seven varsity players will return, including 6-foot 4-inch post Thomas Leisering and point guard Ryan Kimbro. 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