Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Top Unsigned Seniors in SA

With the early signing period ending, it is time to shine some light on SOME of the best unsigned seniors in San Antonio. In no particular order, the 15 players listed below are surely college caliber players. In the right fit and/or a stop at the junior college level, a hand full of these players can contribute at the Division 1 level. Overall, all of these kids should have a good portion of their college educations paid for through basketball.

 Antania Newton(Stevens/5'7)- A really solid combo guard. Can handle the PG but is also shooting 43% from 3 early. Can facilitate, score, and defend.

 Ashley Ross (Wagner/5'7)-  Strong off of the bounce. Can shoot the open 3 and score in traffic. Early numbers do not indicate her true ability.

 Kaelynn Wilson(Wagner/ 5'10)- Undersized 4 and very good athlete. Putting up big numbers early with 17ppg for Top 10 Wagner. A sneaky scorer, does not need a lot of shots to produce.

 Sarai Rodriguez(Steele/5'7)- Savvy PG that can guard full court and hit the open 3. Solid handle and good leader. A gamer.

 Patience Gitau(Cole/6'0) - The 6'0 post is averaging 18 ppg for SA Cole. She has good hands and strong frame. Gitau added a face up game from 15ft this summer.

 Mykel Costly(Brandeis/6'1)- Best shot blocker in the city. College frame already. Finishing better in thru contact.  

 TT Pressley- (Clemens/5'8) Quick defensive specialist 3 steals per game. Scoring at a good clip early at around 17 ppg. Has Clemens(4A) in Top 10 in the city

 Deleesha Monroe(Stevens/5'10)- Undersized PF with good touch. Can face up and hit the jumper. 6'1 wingspan and super strong frame lets her rebound at a high level.

 Samantha Allen(Judson/ 5'5)- One of the quickest lead guards in the city. On ball defensive specialist. Does a good job setting the table for others.

 Shameka Brown(Judson/5'9)- Athletic wing with great defensive instincts. Tough kid, good motor. Can slash and score in traffic from wing.

 Sabrina Cantigal(Clemens/ 5'8) - Solid scorer with a strong frame as a 2 guard. Touches paint for most of her 15ppg.

 Hannah Thompson(Brandeis/5'7)- One of better floor generals in the city. Super strong body. Really good table setter and IQ kid.

 Devon Branch(Boerne/ 5'7)- Explosive guard in transition. Can hit the open 3. Strong to the rack and draws fouls at a good rate.

 Jules Rendon-(Stevens/5'5)- Tough guard. Puts pressure on the defense thru constant penetration. Good defender.

 Amy Saucedo- (MacArthur/5'7)- Best unsigned  long ranger shooter in the city. Good ball handler and solid defender. Can play some combo.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Brennan HC Koty Cowgill Talks SA Basketball!

Reigning SA Express-News Coach of the Year, Koty Cowgill joins us to discuss San Antonio basketball. Touches on:
  • Being passed over for numerous jobs locally
  • Differences between collegiate and high school levels for players and coaches.  
  • What will it take for a local team to win state.
  • And much more!!!
Click below to hear the Brennan coach talk shop!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Brennan vs Steele Recap!

Predictions: In an attempt to be a bootleg Dan Brown, I gave my prediction for the game "encoded" in my last blog. What many thought was a problem with my fonts, I spelled out my prediction in red capitol letters from the top down. It reads, "Brennan By 5". Lucky guess, but Brennan did prevail by five, 65-60!



Atmosphere- The young  skinny Black dude led the cat calls. Dressed in an extra tight T-shirt and rocking baby dreads in his hair, the youngster had the student section jumping! "Turn Up" is what punctuated every chant. Brennan seemed to feed off of the energy as they mounted a comeback after being down by 15 points at halftime. The small gray haired Caucasian woman in the middle of the student section getting "turnt up" with the kids was as amusing as the game was exciting. In a city that plays high school games in huge empty stadiums, the on-campus environment gave the game a feel of importance. Many of the game participants will go on to play at the next level but few will play in front of a more hyped crowd celebrating them!  



Star Power- Tanaeya Boclair shook off a slow start and took over in the clutch. The Utah bound forward finished with 24 pts 14brds, mostly all in the second half and OT.  Tay frequently caught the ball outside the 3 point line, faced the basketball and attacked the rack! She continues to show her progression as a forward that can play on the perimeter and in the paint. She never wavered and provided a steady influence on her teammates as they faced a seemingly insurmountable lead.


McKenzie Calvert stats are not posted online yet but my prediction of her having 30pts had to be pretty close. Calvert is a young expert at showmanship. She made athletic plays in transition and at the rim. She sacrificed her body to draw timely fouls vs Brennan's huge front line. She hit free throws and stared at Brennan's student section "like what"! The inspirational leader of Steele did her part to help her team win but came up a little short in the end.



Guard Play- UTSA bond Carlie Heineman overcame early foul trouble and hit 2 huge bombs off of well ran sets late in the game for Brennan. Heineman and Kalani Marquez came up big when it mattered. Marquez did a good job shadowing Calvert to her left and being physical with her. She also won a couple 50-50 balls and hit 2 big free throws in the waning seconds.


Sarai Rodriguez was really solid for Steele all night. The PG is small but very quick and effective. She hit a jumper or two but put constant pressure on the D with the dribble. Simply put, Rodriguez in a Division 1 caliber lead guard.  



Baby Bear- Brennan freshman Kinzie Heineman played beyond her years. She did a remarkable job handling the pressure of Steele and running the point. She weathered intense ball pressure and still got the Bears into their many structured sets in the clutch. Brennan does not win without the heady play from the fabulous frosh.


Old Reliable(s) - Grand Canyon commit Eliza Martinez hit timely shots and provided key boards and blocks to keep Brennan close when Boclair and Carlie Heineman started slowly. The 6'1 post hit three 15ft jumpers and a beautiful midrange runner in traffic to keep the Steele defense honest. Foul trouble sat her down early but she was Brennan's best player at times.

Bri Millett shot the ball well from the baseline short corner early for Steele. The strong wing showed her smooth touch as she finished a few dribble kicks by splashing open looks. Unfortunately for Steele, she fouled out early in the 4th quarter.

Erika Chapman had the tough task of keeping Tay Bolcair in check and did so for the 1st half. Chapman also finished strong forays to the rack at crucial times in the games. The wing could have probably used more touches on the offensive end. It would have been interesting to see what would have happened if she was allowed to use her face up game from the pinch post to go at Boclair, who basically rested on the defensive end since Chapman had limited touches.


Coaching- Anyone not knowing how good Brennan's Koty Cowgill is got a glimpse tonight. EVERY set he ran down the stretch resulted in quality looks at the basket, most ending up in buckets for Brennan. Down 15 at half, double figures going into the fourth, Cowgill kept his kids focused and used his timeouts perfectly. He substituted offense for defense resulting in fluid scores and important stops. The most telling set was a staggered pick and roll that ended up being a flare for the second screener, shooter Carlie Heineman. The same set was ran for Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis for UCONN last night. The next time down, they ran the same set but Cowgill knew that the defense would jump Heineman so they hit an isolated Boclair for a paint touch for 2. Those 5 points changed the game! Uncle MOmentum by that time was on his side. Game Over!
The last game I attended that felt like this was a Wagner vs Steele battle during the Len'Nique Brown and Meighan Simmons years. This game exemplified what is right about high school basketball. Dedicated and skilled players, passionate coaches, fans acting up, crowded stands, hard fouls, big shots, people anticipating twitter updates............

Monday, November 11, 2013

SA Early Season Quick Hitters

The first 2013-14 addition of Quick Hitters follows:


- Stevens is going to be a tough out come playoff time. The way they play defensively will cause problems for teams that depend on scoring in the half court. Close losses in the Northside Tournament to Brennan and Wagner showed that Stevens can play with anyone in the city. Point guard Antania Newton is looking good after sitting out after transferring from John Jay and will have a Breakout season.

- Boerne looks very strong in 3A. They are deep and talented at multiple positions. However, the NISD touRnament showed them that they have a long way to go when matching up with the "big girls" of 4A-5A.

- The much anticipated matchup featuring the top teams in the city is tomorrow. SA ExprEss News #1 Brennan vs # 2 Steele. Keys to the game.

·         Can Brennan keep USC bound McKenzie Calvert off of the free throw line? Calvert, like all good scorers, has a kNack for drawing fouls and eating at the free throw line.

·         Can Steele turn over Brennan? Brennan is without a true PG and must break the press by committee. If Brennan is uNaffected by full court pressure they will be tough to beat.

·         Can Steele manufacture "easy points". Steele has yet to be tested without the services of Kyra Lambert this season. The 'Kyra Effect" did not show up on her personal stat sheet. She Allowed others to score with her defense and constant attacking pressure on the offensive end.

·         Can Brennan use its substantial size advantage to control the boards and earN second chance points. Rebounding and limiting Steele's second chance points should not be much of a problem but will Brennan be able to dominate the paint with put backs? Grand Canyon commit Eliza Martinez is shooting 62%  and Presbyterian commit Deja Mason is finishing at a 58% clip early.

·         Prediction- Calvert will go for 30pts. Tay Boclair will have 20 and 10 brds. But the game will come down to Brennan making perimeter shots vs Steele's zone in order to win. Steele will have to score in transition and get double digits out of 2 more players besides Calvert . The winner will be....

- Speaking of Brennan, Coach Koty Cowgill has decided to play an arduous schedule early playing Top 10: Reagan, Stevens, Steele and Judson in the same week. Smart since his district will not challenge the Bears much.

- Johnson may be the favorite in 26-5A but the districts is Reagan's to lose. Sara Lewis's is steadily getting better and is a growing inside presence. Reagan can stretch defenses with the best shooting Backcourt in the city, Mailee Jones, Anya Curtiss and WendY Knight. Wendy Knight is well, Wendy Knight. She's been solid since day one on Reagan's campus.

- O'Conner looks good early. They are small but scrappy and move the ball well. Amber Vidal'15 is having a great start including giving 19pts to Top 10 Judson, 24pts to Brenham, 19pts vs Top 5 Wagner.  


- Wagner has 2 early losses but will be ok as usual late. Kailynn Wilson'14 is doing it early. The kid is athletic enough to play at the D1 level. She is averaging 17pts fresh off of volleyball.

- Speaking of fresh, 2 ACL injuries already this season. One has to wonder if some teams already playing close to 20 games in fall leagues has something to with it?  20 fall league games plus 35 high school games is 15 more games than NCAA D1 men play!

- Dominique Randall is averaging 9 points early for Judson. While that may not jump off of the page, please consider that Judson is averaging a tad bit more than 40 points a game. Randall is an impressive athlete.

- Brandeis is good and deep! They had a tough time scoring in the half court at times last season but does not seem to be a problem this year with Fabulous Frosh Gabby Connally on board. Mykel Costley has improved finishing in the paint and PG, Hannah Thompson is a capable floor general. The loss of sharp shooter Kelsey Glassburn to a knee injury hurts their chances of winning the city but the return of Morgan Williams from volleyball should help. Watch Treasure Riven at the PF position. The kid is strong in the paint.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Will 2017 SA class be the best ever?

The 2017 class is loaded in San Antonio. Here are the Top 5 players according to this blog. Do not be surprised if most of these 5 youngsters are considered Top 100 kids nationally when it is all said and done.

Kianna Williams (Wagner)
Gabby Connally  Brandeis)
Makala Mabry (Alamo Heights)
Hannah Knight(Poth)
Brittany Rogers(East Central)

Click the podcast to hear some of the best of the rest and details on this impressive group!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

PBR's Mark Williams talks Top 2014's in the country.

PBR debuted their Top 175 players nationally for the class of 2014. PBR's national scout Mark Williams talks Arielle Atkins, Briana Turner, Texas 2016's, California depth this year and more.....

Monday, November 4, 2013

Central Texas Report w/ Joe Dean

D1 College Report founder Joe Dean joins us for a podcast on Central Texas.

Top 15 Players in the City of SA

In what has been a yearly occurrence since the inception of this blog, here are the Top 15 kids in the city. Detractors will mention the heavy  SA Finest presence. The same thing happened in 2010 when TeamXpress had a virtual monopoly on the Top 10 players in the city. Bias has nothing to do with it as the college coaches spoke then, as they do now. SA Finest had eight out of the fifth teen Division 1 players in the city. Of the four BCS bound kids in the city for 2014, SA Finest has three.  I have also included National Rankings for those not in the know about where our local kids fit in the eyes of the "experts".

1. Recee' Caldwell(2014/ FEAST Homeschool)-UCLA

National Rankings ( Prospect Nation-#6, All-Star Girls Report-#6, ESPNW-#9, Bluestar-#10)

Only kid to make USA Basketball while still in high school in SA history. 2 time Team USA Invitee, won gold medal w/ 2011 u16 Team as a 14 year old. Had pretty much choice of school including offers from the last 3 NCAA champions, 4 out the last  5.  A gym rat with Basketball IQ and ability to shoot off of the bounce that rivals any player in the country. Arguably the best facilitator in the state/country. Now playing at FEAST home school after sitting out last season to improve her game and heal nagging injuries.

2.McKenzie Calvert(2014/Steele) USC-

National Rankings( ESPNW-#16, ASGR-#37, Bluestar-#58  , Prospect Nation-#72)

Former Baylor commit reopened and decided to go west. Two time Team USA invitee. Should finish in Top 3 in scorers in the history of the city.  One of the best transition scorers in the state /country. Plays with an edge that sets the tone for her state runner-up team. Has improved her jump shot, also a gym rat. Idea frame to live in paint at next level and cause havoc on defensive end.

3. Kyra Lambert(2014/Clemens)- Former Texas A&M commit.

National Rank(ESPNW-#6, Bluestar #9, ASGR- #11, Prospect Nation-#34)

Transferred to Clemens but will have to sit out  junior year. Doesn't matter, still has pretty much  have her choice of schools at the next level. Fastest kid in SA with the ball in her hands. Good IQ and facilitator. Ability to create off of the bounce for self and others makes her one of   the most coveted guards in 2015 class. Potential to be a lock down kid and idea lead guard at the next level.


4. Amber Ramirez(2014/Wagner)

National Ranking(ASGR-#10, Prospect Nation #11)

The purest scorer in the city of SA. Can score in transition, midrange and is unquestionably one of best long range bombers in the country. Reads passing lanes extremely well and lives at the free throw line. One of the most recruited kids in the country with most suitors in Top 25 teams in the land. Like the 3 players mentioned above, first college offers came while still in middle school.

5. Tanaeya Boclair(Brennan/2014)Utah

National Rank (CGBR-#221/ 46th ranked  SF in country)

Followed up  a great high school season with a very good summer that saw her college options top 20 plus. Now possesses the ability to play stretch 4 at the next level with an improved 3ball. Should see her play some point forward for Brennan this season. 2013 Athlete of the year and 2 time SA Express News Super Teamer.

6. Gabbie Bowie(Johnson/2014)Utah

National Rank Peach State-#207

One of the most explosive athletes in the city. Also one of the most improved players. Another gym rat that has smoothed out her game to earn a spot at the BCS level. Showed that she can play the 2 this summer by knocking down open looks and handling some ball handling duties. Should have a breakout season on the offensive end , averaging 17 plus points a game if system doesn't play defense on its own players.

7. Wendy Knight(Reagan/2014)Rice

One of the most successful high school players in city history. 3 time district champ and two time Super teamer. Knight is one of the best spot up shooters in SA. Her size and athleticism allows her to score in transition and in the half court. Should average close to 20pts a game on a relatively young Reagan team. Headed to Rice after having double digit college opportunities. Don't be surprised if she leads Reagan to 4th straight district title.  

8. Erica Sanders(/Johnson/2015)

Former Texas Tech Commit

Another really good athlete that excels in the open court. Has been in the gym improving her mid-range game. Currently possesses the defensive ability and explosiveness that translates to the BCS level. As she continues to improve the 3ball and tighten her handle, she should get recruited at that level. Again, much of  her season(development) depends on offensive freedom.

9. Carlie Heineman(Brennan/2014) UTSA

Arguably the best shooter in the city. Her now 5'10 frame allows to routinely hit volleyball line range jumpers in rhythm. Showed that she can touch paint and use an effective runner while at Marshall. Handle is strong enough to handle some ball handling duties. Will surely find things much easier playing alongside Boclair and at least 5 additional D1 players at Brenan. Great teammate.

10. Simone Fields(Judson/2014) Univ Louisiana-Lafayette

Easily one of the best paint scorers in the city. Plays through contact and possesses the needed tools to score in traffic. Does a good job running the floor. Really good offensive rebounder for her size. Should  translate well to ULL as a power forward that causes matchup problems with her ability to operate at high post.

10. Avery Queen(Boerne/2014)Denver Commit

The most skilled post player in the city. Has stretched her already proficient mid-range jumper to 3point land. Has an array or offensive finishes. Favors a turn around jump shot from 10-12 feet. Best weapon may be her jump hooks with either hand. Should lead Boerne to state this season for 3A.

12. Erika Chapman(Steele/2014)Air Force Commit

One of the most improved kids in the city. Chapman has improved her range and ball handling ability, thus, enabling her to use her "sneaky" athleticism. A kid that never rattles, Chapman played a huge part in Steele's rise to the state championship game last year. A tough guard at the 4 spot in the city, she should transition nicely to the 3 at Air Force.  Can board bigger than her measurements and finishes extremely well in traffic. Go to Youtube and search SA Finest vs Cal Sparks and see her performance against two Top 30 players nationally.

13. Ashley Ross(Wagner/2014)

On the radar of this blog for a long time, Ross is ready! After suffering a knee injury two years ago, she looks back to full form which means she is primed for a big year for Wagner. One of the toughest kids to guard off of the bounce in the city, she has a knack for touching paint and drawing fouls. She has cleaned up her jump shot and has added a step back to her arsenal. With the right fit and focus, Ross should really thrive in an up tempo system at the next level.

14. Kirstin Kramer(Clark/2015)

Great size and good athleticism to translate well at the D1 level. Solid stroke from 3, she can also put it on the floor well. Has the ability to play at the BCS level if she continues to improve. Not sure what her true position would be at the next level. She is more than a spot up shooter but  not the prototypical playmaker yet.

15. Bri Millett(Steele/2015) LA Tech Decommit

One of the most crafty playmakers in the city. Has a unique blend of a strong body and soft touch, Millet is not a traditional kid. Could potentially cause matchup problems at the next level as she does in HS. Makes "basketball plays", can create off of the bounce but also has adept footwork off of the catch.  

15. Kalani Marquez(Brennan/2014)

Under the radar kid. Terrific size for low-mid major D1 shooting guard. Has long been known as a proficient shooter from deep but now has added a beautiful pull up jumper from the midrange. Handle has tightened up and basketball IQ is on point now. Understands spacing and exploiting match ups. Size and frame should allow her to rebound well from the guard position at the appropriate level.