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Kyle, Texas
August 9, 2017     Hays Free Press
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August 9, 2017

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+ + Page 2B Spms Hays Free Press August 9, 2017 / BY MOSES LEOS III an cross es in "Last year, our motto was 'let's get to the beach' ... Now, let's try to get back to the beach and do something when we get there." Returning to Corpus Christi for the Class 6A, Region IV champion- ships is no longer just the goal for the Lehman High cross country team in 2017. After reaching the regional round last year, the team's top runner last outpace each other, it Lobo cross country head season, graduated and is benefitted both," Antoun coach Ramez Antoun running at Prairie View said. "They benefitted hopes the program can A&M. Eric Gordillo, who from a symbiotic rela- improve upon that finish was the team's third best tionship." and potentially go even runner, decided not to Junior Edson Hernan- further, participate after he was dez and Jesus Mesa will While the team gradu- selected to play on an help the Lobo boys, as ated several key cogs academy soccer team. well as Joshua Torres- from last year's squad, Antoun said he un- Whitmer, who is one of Antoun believes the derstands there are big the few seniors on the team can build around holes to fill on the boys group. the experience that side and hopes to do so "What I love about this returns, with several returning sport is there's no opin- "Last year, our motto runners. One of those is ion involved," Antoun was 'let's get to the junior Santos Hernan-said. "The clock and the beach'," Antoun said. dez, who Antoun said is time will determine who "Now, let's try to get back a talented runner and is our fastest guys are." to the beach and do "one of the hardest work- On the girls side, An- something when we get ing kids we have." toun said the Lobos are there." Sophomore Jose Cano looking to field a varsity One of the top priori- also returns for the level team, which hasn't ties for 2017 will be filling Lobos. Antoun said Cano been done in the last few two of the team's top regularly outpaced Mal- years. three spots on the boys rey for "a good chunk" of He said the girls squad team. the 2016 season, has three athletes to Tracy Malrey, who was "Them being able to build around, along with - Ramez Antoun, Lobo cross country head coach an influx of younger ath- letes who will be thrown into the fold. "We have junior high kids with experience coming into our program for the first time since they started cross county at that level," Antoun said. The girls team will be centered on the nucleus of Cam Woods, Yesenia Contreras and Stephanie Quistellan. Antoun said all three were competitive at the junior varsity level. Lehman's short-term focus now lies in ready- ing for the 25-6A cross country meet in October. The Lobos' ability to surpass the level of com- petition in the district, including that of Hays and Vista Ridge, was a mark of accomplishment last season, Antoun said. "I told them it doesn't matter what happens in the first meet, what mat- ters is what happens in the last one, Antoun said. "Between now and [the district meet on] Oct. 12 is practice." FARMERS' Debbie Thames Insurance Agency AUTO HOME LIFE BOAT HEALTH 251 N. 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"I don't think have tried to bring that we've taken a step back size along, to where we at all, even having some could get where we want young kids at some posi- and have some kids with tions." some ball control, even Depth is an asset that's though they are big kids." so far helped the Rebels The Rebels plan to during practice. Coates work speeding up the believes the Rebels are offense when they head three-deep in a lot of to Pearland for the 2017 positions. It's also helped John Turner Volleyball spur competition on the Classic. Hays will face off team, Coates said. against Waco Midway, "The girls at the top Houston Bellaire and o:f the depth chart know Katy Cinco Ranch in pool they don't play their best play. at all times, there's some- In addition, the Rebels one behind them that's plan to work on their barking at their heels," offensive and defensive Coates said. patterns, along with pass- Along with the depth ing and serving. is the height that comes "When we look at with it. Coates said the Rouse, Dripping Springs Rebels' size may allow or Westlake that have big them to to compete hitters on the other side, against top tier oppo- we're looking to affect nents in the state, their offense," Coates That includes in- said. "We're taking some district foes Westlake and risks now (with serving) Lake Travis, which have early to try to get to the dominated district play point where we're serving the last few seasons, that tough." 1-800-460-0606 www.Respect for You.corn PHOTO BY MOSES LEOS III Hays Rebel Kaitlyn Krafka drives the ball past a defender dur- ing a scrimmage Saturday at Hays High. It's easy to blame the driver when a ~ is involved in a wreck, but the Iruth is usually much more complex. When Iruckin9 company management cuts corners in ~ning, equipment and maintenance, the rest of us pay the pnco. If you or someone you love has been killed or injured in an com~rdal truck wreck, call us today for professional insight. 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On the boys' side, Daniel Garraya, Rob- bie Woodworth and Bailey Oswalt are three members of a group that gained experience last year. With a young team, Hightower said the ,Roebel boys group is now ne cohesive unit" that enjoys challenging each other and "are already setting their goals high for the season." Helping both boys and girls team will be an "We now have a huge crop of freshman that know about the sport ... It will make the season exciting because it fills in this automatic competitiveness within the team as we start the year." - Tract Hightower, Hays High head cross country coach influx of young talent making their way from middle school. In 2016, Hays CISD started cross country programs in the middle school ranks. "We now have a huge crop of freshman that know about the sport," Hightower said. "It will make the season excit- ing because it fills in this automatic competitive- ness within the team as we start the year." Familiarity with High- tower, who now enters her xxx year as the Rebel cross country coach also plays a role as well. She said juniors and seniors know what to expect from the coaching staff and push that down to the younger runners. "When you have a group of older kids that are comfortable with my expectations and the ex- pectations with the group themselves, it trickles down to the younger ones," she said. As they start preparing for their district oppo- nents, Hightower said the athletes understand and know who their competi- tion are, based on stats gathered on websites such as Texas Mile Split. "But we remind them that if stats were every- thing, we wouldn't run the race," Hightower said. 'Tknything can happen on race day. The most important thing is you do what you're supposed to do on race day." Lady Lobos Continued from pg. 1B tage, but lead the Lobos ::' 7:' ::' to success. Lehman o~ its ho~e schedule Familiarity also will against Akins on Augu play a role for the Lobos to be successful. That Th~ LO~ ~rfl~@| to L@~n~@l" to familiarity, primarily with the coaching staff, goes D@Oln ~15111~ pl~y ~[~m~@r ~ iii beyond the starting six on the court. Legh-Page said the program's incoming freshman are "ready to go" as middle school coaches are improving skills across the board. "Since they're coming with more knowledge, we can build off of the foun- dation from our middle school coaches," Legh- Page said. As the Lobos navi- gate through a handful of pre-distfict season tournaments, building team chemistry, as well as ironing out the kinks, will be the focus. 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