The Armadillo Arena was the site for the 20 year reunion of the SSHS 8AA Varsity Basketball Team on Friday night, January 15th, during the high school games. Former SSHS basketball coach Mike Meredeith introduced the team during halftime of the last game. This SSHS team eventually got to the Regional Tournament in Abilene that year after capturing the District, Bi-District and Area Championships.
Coach Meredeith said, "The year before I was in San Saba, the basketball team went 8-22. These kids turned that around and went 22-8 for the year. We won district with a 9-1 record to finish a game ahead of Bangs. We beat Baird in a warm-up game and then beat Stamford in the first round 42-40. We defeated a very good Eldorado team 43-40 to qualify for the Regional Tournament. We lost at the Regional Tournament to the eventual regional champion, Abernathy, in a hard fought 55-45 game."
"This group was truly a 'team' with four of the starters (Dane Amthor, Yancey Sanderson, Kevin Shahan, Bryan Shahan) averaging either 10 or 11 points a game. Our point guard (Jason Verette) averaged about 5 points a game, but he was the one that kept everything organized on the floor and was asked to take on the tougher defensive assignments in many games. We had only three substitutes, Chris Davis, HM Boswell, and Todd Amthor. They had to know multiple positions in order to be ready to back up the starters when they got in foul trouble or had an injury."
He continues, "I believe that the starting five had two Valedictorians and one Salutatorian. That certainly makes a coach's job easier when the kids are that smart and we never had to worry about eligibility. This was truly a fun year for me that I will never forget."
Coach Meredeith organized the reunion, finding his former players through the San Saba High School Alumni Association, players' family and friends. He is now retired from coaching and teaching and lives in Georgetown.
*Just a note...SSHS Alumni Association president, Keith Shahan, discovered through this planning, that our present SSHS principal, Harper Stewart, was at the same Regional Tournament in Abilene that year, playing for his Haskell HS varsity team!