Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Opening Night Quick Hitters

Watching an opening night triple header, here is the 1st Quick Hitter of the season.

  • Hair laid, clean fitted skirt to the knees, black high heel pumps, she's ready.  She sat through the previous game with no expression. While other coaches talk with their colleagues and/or talk schemes with their staff, Anissa Hastings just sits with her legs crossed and arms folded. Game time comes around and the elegance is still there but the intensity of a former defensive stopper at a big time college program comes to the forefront.  In the first game of the season, Hastings has been a thorn in the side of NEISD teams over the last few years. Her initial year at Stevens, she ushered in her era with a big win over Churchill, ranked in the Top 3 in the city at that time. Last night, it was Reagan's turn to get a dose of Hastings and her Stevens squad. In the past, her Stevens teams have been slept on but the SA Express- News had her squad ranked in the Top 5 in the preseason rankings, to a surprise to some. Knowing Hastings , who lost three seniors that all went on to play college basketball, the ranking is still too low. Stevens can play defense and in this city where offensive depth is not a strength this year, Hastings and her crew are nothing to sneeze at this season.

  • Speaking of SA Express News, they obviously do a great job with providing exposure to the young women in this city. I hope they will now introduce voting coaches to a D1 commit named Amber Vidal after she went for 24 points(7/12) 5 assists and 5 steals last night. She may be a player to watch now.

  • Speaking of a player to watch that was not mentioned in the same preseason article, Kiana Williams may not be cleared for the big game between #1 Wagner and #2 Brennan tonight. Williams may not be known to the coaches who voted for Players to Watch but is being "watched" by Louisville, Maryland, Texas, Texas A&M, Baylor, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Rutgers, Kansas, Purdue, Stanford to name a few. Most of these coaches who lead these nationally relevant programs have offered the 2017 PG a scholarship.

  • A couple of new coaches made their debuts last night for NEISD teams. David Backlund is the new boss at Churchill and Stephanie Desmarais leads Johnson. Backlund seems to have some Wulfsberg in him as he runs some of the similar on-ball picks and spreads the floor for his star, Mikke Flores. Desmarais, a former college basketball player, seems to emphasize ball movement and playing pressure defense.

  • Guard Kasey Saldana makes O'Connor tough to guard off of the bounce in their wide open system. She tallied 16 points and combined with Amber Vidal to score 40 points from the guard spot for O'Connor.

  • Defenders better learn the name Mya Green. The slender lefty for Churchill has the green light and lit Brandies up for 18 last night. The corner three seems to be her calling card and the Churchill system emphasizes the drive and kick.

  • Gabby Connally continues to add to her game. The highly touted, heavily recruited lead guard for Brandeis adds something to her game every year. Playing this summer with the brilliant Kyra Lambert and the crafty Texas Tech bound Japreece Dean, Connally has become an elite table setter. She has always been able to score but now can facilitate at a very high level as well. 

  • Johnson freshman Desiree Caldwell went for 20 points, doing a solid job as the PG in her 1st HS game, a loss to Top 10 O'Connor. 

  • Erica Sanders is a do-it-all player this season. She may average a double double the way she is rebounding from the guard position. At 5'8 she snatched boards and  led the break last night. She also is Johnson best defender. Sanders has yet to commit, she is surely a D1 bound athlete.