Monday, November 23, 2009

SAISD Tourney Notes!

-Key Matchup-
Antonian proved to be queens of the court in the SAISD Tournament this past weekend. Many thought that Roosevelt was the favorite to win the event until the Apaches dispatched them in second round. The game was a contrast of styles and coaching.

While Rice University was in attendance to undoubtedly keep a watchful eye on Roosevelt's Asha Hampton-Finch and Niaga Mitchell-Cole, what they saw was a clinic in basketball execution. I have long thought that Antonian coach, Breck Ross is one of the better teachers in San Antonio and this past weekend reaffirmed my opinion of him. Antonian sliced up Roosevelt's diamond press like this upcoming Thursdays dinner. It turned into a lay up drill for the Apaches. The very athletic Rough Riders are extremely long and fast BUT were not long or fast enough to beat the ball down court. It is amazing how precision passing, proper spacing and disciplined players can render a pressing team ineffective. The Rough Riders then dropped back into a zone and the Antonian guards hit jumpers, exploited gaps and fed SAISD Tourney MVP, Kathryn Galindo for easy scores. Liz Briones is shooting the ball very well for the Apaches. Nicole Conlee also made the all-tournament team for the Antonian.

-A Few Standout Players
Niaga Mitchell-Cole(Roosevelt)- I become more enthralled with Niaga's game every time I see her. She is one of the few kids in the city who can get her shot off against extreme pressure. The sophomore has a long way to go in terms of tightening her handle and smoothing out her jumper but her middle range pull up jump shot is beautiful. Her first step is deceptively fast and her court vision is impressive. I can only imagine her in a spread offense with a simple on-ball flat pick to allow her to do what she does: BALL!!!

Liz Briones (Antonian)- Liz Briones has to be considered one of the better catch and shoot three point shooters in the city. The evolution of her game has allowed her to leave the post and routinely nail 20 footers. The always vocal Briones is now a great compliment to the low post presence of Katryrn Galindo.

Chamaya Turner (Canyon)- I wrote about the freshman sensation after working with her in a camp a couple of months back, but this was my first opportunity to see her in high school. She did not disappoint! The freshman guard/forward made the all-tournament team while leading her team to a close semi-final lose to Del Rio. Turner scored 18 in that 43-42 loss but crashed the boards and contributed key assists. Turner is one of the most productive freshman varsity players in the area, along with Jay's Destiny Amezquita and Boerne Champion's Brooke Allemand.

Monique Waters (East Central)- Waters is as quick as they come. The 5'2 senior guard has one gear, VERY FAST! She puts constant pressure on the defense by penetrating at will. Her handle is decent but it is her extraordinary speed in the open court that allows her to live in the paint. She can score, as witnessed by her 24 points(17 in the 2nd half) against Taft.

Jennifer Dye (Taft)- Dye is the MOST VOCAL kid that I have encountered in a long time. She directs her squad like a seasoned coach. She YELLS things like "I see you working Josalyn, keep it up girl", throughout the game in encouragement of her teammates. She plays as hard as she cheers and hits the ground often. Her offensive game can be a little more fluid but she gave East Central 19 points in the first half of their game to finish with 26 points in a close loss.

Kiante Ageous (Sam Houston)- KiKi was the best player in the event. Her game has been discussed repeatedly on this blog but probably not enough. Unfortunately, KiKi gets overlooked while playing in 3A. She scored at will against constant double teams.

Ashley Bryand(Smithson Valley)- Byrand consistently went for double-doubles in the event. The power forward is the only inside presence for SV. Bryand plays with the very talented Danielle Blagg and a good shooter in Allison Salmon. She takes care of the dirty work and was key in a couple of wins for SV in the event.

Vanessa Winston-(Austin Akins) Walker was going to work in the event. The small but extremely fast point guard is super strong. Her hesitation move going right was unguardable. She was easily one of the best players in the tourney.