Heck, I don’t know how to start this one- "All GREAT things must end, man what a ride, tears of joy, tears of sadness, (WHAT IF?)". I do know this, for the first time ever at the Frank Erwin Center, the San Saba Lady Dillos showed everyone that they belonged there and we almost, almost pulled off one for the ages!!!
Message boards and forums wear me out and believe me, we took some shots via the internet about how we were lucky to be there and how Brock was going to "roll us up like a cheap suitcase". Well, lo and behold, not only did we make a great showing, we lead the 2 time defending state champ by seven going into the last quarter but couldn’t hold on as Brock advanced and ultimately won their third consecutive State Championship. Brock’s Head Coach, Skip Townsend, gave lots of praise to our group and said in the Standard Times that "San Saba didn’t act or play like it was their first time in the Erwin Center". I’ve known Skip for a long time as we had some battles back in our Copperas Cove/Lampasas days. He’s a great coach and it meant a great deal to our program for him to speak highly of our girls. Of course, Brock rolled Winnsboro the next day by more than 20 points and we could only watch and think WHAT IF from the stands.
Regardless, what a great last month, we’ve made so many great memories and had loads of fun and experienced things that we will carry with us for the rest of our lives. Coach Schulze, who I think the world of, sent me an email before we left for Austin and he pretty much summed it all up like only he can do. He told me the medals and plaques and all the material stuff are neat but what you won’t forget are the memories and man is he right!!
Just off the top of my head without much thought I think of these things- "Raining threes"- those umbrellas being opened as we drain a 3 ball, our great DILLO FANS, the "ELECTRICITY" in the crowd at Brady when we defeated Bangs, the WELCOME HOME PARTY as we arrived back from Midland, our NO MORE BUBBLES text, the 700 plus PURPLE DILLO FANS at the Erwin Center, the walk down the tunnel at the Erwin Center, seeing the Erwin Center Court early on Friday morning and yelling "HICKORY" like they did in the movie Hoosiers, hitting 7 of 10 three balls in the first half, having everyone but Brock fans pulling for the Lady Dillos in one of the most entertaining games over the three day event, our game at the Junnell Center with Merkel, the second half surge against Hico to get us to Austin, winning by ten over Hico with 1:16 left in the game and going over to Coach Pannell and saying "I’m not sure about this but I think we’re headed to Austin!!!", the UT/Tech game. I"m sure there are tons more but these things come to mind on an early Monday morning.
Now a little bit about the game. We knew going into the game that Brock relied mainly on two players for their scoring- Kami Cole who is an Oklahoma verbal commitment and Paige Parliament who is going to play next year at Abilene Christian. I knew we weren’t going to "shut them out" so to speak but I felt if we could contain them we would have a chance. Haylee Oliver more than held her own against Parliament as she had six blocks on her in the first half. Cole got some points but Johna Reavis did a nice job on her keeping her in check. We got down six to end the first quarter and I’m sure everyone there but our Dillo Fans were thinking blowout. The second quarter would be all Lady Dillos as we got hot beyond the arc. Nessa got on a roll and hit three 3 balls in thirty seven seconds as we went in at half up seven, 23-16. We traded some buckets in the third quarter and with a little over two minutes the call of the game changed everything. Haylee picked up her fourth foul and we were up nine at that point. We took her out and Brock went on a quick 5-0 run to cut the lead to four. The Lady Eagles had all the momentum to close the quarter and then carried that shift into the fourth period as well. Brock went to a half court trap and it gave us fits. We had 10 turnovers in the fourth quarter which killed us. Late in the game Brock pushed to lead up to five. We later cut the lead to three on two freethrows and then got a steal and Nessa let a three pointer go from deep in the corner that I thought was going down. We had to foul to stop the clock and Brock made freethrows and survived a close call. We had talked about going to Austin on a business trip and not just "being glad to be there."
Our goal going down there was to win a STATE CHAMPIONSHIP and we dang sure tried.
All I know is that we gave a STATE CHAMPIONSHIP effort. Who knows, if Haylee doesn’t pick up her fourth foul, if we handle that halfcourt trap better, a three here and there in the second half, it all adds up. I do know this our TEAM played hard and physical with them, competed till the buzzer went off and made lots of folks proud. These ladies got several compliments from coaches all over the state the following day and they should be proud of the
way they played and handled themselves.Here goes my last SHOUTOUTS for basketball season- you guys hold on because I have quite a few- My biggest
SHOUTOUT first goes to our 5 SENIORS- thank you for an awesome year- you guys had a REFUSE to LOSE attitude the last month and you have set a standard for future Lady Dillos to strive for, man what a fivesome- Johna Reavis, Jaeana Edwards, Tarah Crosby, Danessa Vasquez, and Haylee Oliver. My next SHOUTOUT goes to the rest of our TEAM- Ashley Pulatie, Paige Faught, Karlee Cromer, Joannah
Crosby, Alexa Maxcey, Kayla Kutin, Marshal McIntosh, and Jared Steger.
I appreciate all you guys and what you’ve done for our program. Thanks to Coach Stowe as well for all of your support and help this year. A big SHOUTOUT to our AD Coach Pannell- your support for these girls has been unbelievable. I appreciate your help in Austin, youwere great!! I’ve worked for two AD’s while in San Saba and they’re both top notch. I think it has to do with the wives they married and them being sisters- great bloodlines!!!
A big SHOUOUT as well to our administration- Mrs. Glaze, Mr. Bohensky, and Mr. Martin- thanks for following us and for your support. A SHOUTOUT to Mrs. Key and "Shack Attack" for the sendoffs, those were way cool!! A SHOUTOUT to Mrs. Blossman for your talk to the girls and "side" support!! Booster Club take a bow as well, thank you for Charter to Midland, I felt like we were on a spaceship heading west. That mode of transportation was sweet and greatly appreciated.
My next SHOUTOUT goes to these guys who I think got this all started with the fivesome years ago before I even arrived. I would like to give a SHOUTOUT to Oscar and Daniel Zepeda for the work they did with these ladies years ago and for teaching the game of basketball at a young age. These two are still going strong with young Lady Dillos and you guys are greatly appreciated as well. One unbelievable SHOUTOUT to our Dillo Fans, you guys were in full force last Friday and were awesome with a Capital A. Man, what a showing!!! Another big SHOUTOUT as well to the Umbrella Guys- whomever came up with that, take a bow. I’ve had many coaches the last few weeks say the umbrellas are SWEET!!! I know I’ll leave someone out and it’s not intentional but SHOUTOUTS to everyone who helped with this journey.
From a school standpoint- SHOUTOUTS to Jackie Dyer for getting us rooms, meal money, and helping organize things. Kaycee Thiebaud and Michelle Perry for getting me subs at the last minute so I could get on the road for tapes. A big thanks to Alton for getting me cars at the last minute for scouting purposes as well. Thanks to ALL teachers for signs that you guys made in support of our Lady Dillos- way cool. Lastly, a BIG, BIG SHOUTOUT to my family- Tracie, Hallie, and Mason- I LOVE YOU GUYS!!! Thanks for your support this season and for spending this last month with me and a TOTALLY AWESOME group of young ladies!!!! Oh, I forgot one, got to get this SHOUTOUT in to this legend as well- Congrats to Coach Cox and his tennis team for qualifying for the State Team Tennis tourney again, and you’ll never guess who beat them in the Regional Finals as well- hmm, not sure, you’ve got to be kidding, yep, that’s who it was—UUHHH!! Brock!! Peace Out my fellow Dillo brethren!! See you at some spring sporting event in the future!!! MOE and Phil 4:13.