Crossroads players form bonds as they compete in all-star games
By BY JULIE GARCIA -
March 24, 2014 at 11:03 p.m.
Updated March 23, 2014 at 10:24 p.m.
With only an hour to learn plays, strategy and each others' names, high school basketball players from all over the Crossroads were divided into teams to play each other in the sixth annual Victoria College/Chick-fil-A All-Star Basketball Games on Monday night.
Amanise Coleman, Shiner senior, said that though they got to know each other quickly, a bond formed.
"We were laughing and giggling and telling stories," said Coleman, who was named the Most Valuable Player for the girls' game. "I thought, 'I met you 30 minutes ago, and I'm already telling you my life.'"
Coleman led the White team with 16 points in a 63-57 victory at the VISD Events Center.
"I liked it; it was very fast-paced," Coleman said. "It was different because everyone was good, and that made it more competitive. I like speed like that."
Representatives from Victoria, Bloomington, Hallettsville Sacred Heart, Goliad, Edna, Shiner St. Paul, Yoakum, Refugio, Ganado and El Campo took the court.
Many of the girls play spring sports like softball or track and field, but Coleman is focusing on college tryouts at a few different schools.
"You have to push throughout," Coleman said, adding that she was tired from the lack of conditioning. "I said to myself, 'You must win.'"
Jaycie Orsak from Hallettsville Sacred Heart said the White team had chemistry right away.
"We all enjoy basketball, so that made it easier to work together," Orsak, a senior who also runs track and does long jump, said.
Orsak scored eight points.
On the Maroon squad, Bloomington's Brittany Wallace led scoring with 15 points and one three-pointer.
Playing against Bloomington teammate Katie Williams on the White team, Wallace said the competition was elevated.
"Because we were so competitive in practice and in different sports, that was fun," Wallace said. "It was really fun to play with girls who aren't on my team."
Goliad's Sydney Morris won the three-point contest with 12 out of 20 shots made. Bloomington's Williams took second place with 10 shots made.
Goliad's Dravian Duncan wasn't shooting to be the game's MVP on Monday night in the all-star game.
"All I was shooting for was helping my team win," Duncan said. Duncan was the leading scorer for the White team with 17 points and four 3-pointers.
The White team defeated Maroon 87-75 after holding the lead for the majority of the game.
Playing against some of the best players in the Crossroads was a good challenge for Duncan, who will play at Texas State next year. He plans to major in business and finance.
"It was pretty fun to get a touch of what I had during the season," he said.
Joe Mireles was the only player from Yoakum to play in the all-star game. He said there was no pressure to perform but only to have fun and get to know the other players.
"It was a lot more fast-paced; the players were bigger and faster," Mireles, who scored 12 points and four 3-pointers, said. "I expected that."
Mireles also won the 3-point contest with 14 out of 20 shots made. Victoria West's Chris Erskine took second with 12 shots.
On the maroon team, Victoria East's Austin Alexander was the leading scorer of the game with 20 points and four 3-pointers.
"In one hour, you learn a lot about people and how they play," Alexander said. "We all love the game of basketball."
Victoria College men's basketball coach Jesse Ortega coached the girls' maroon team and the boys' white team.
Though playing basketball is always the fun part, Ortega liked the time to tour campus with the players during the day.
"It's fun getting all these different personalities and getting to work together," he said.
It was also a good chance to see what the area has to offer in the basketball arena. He said that he saw several players he thought could add to VC's program.
Goliad's Dalton Sturm won the dunking contest with two dunks.
White 63, Maroon 57
HALFTIME: White 36, Maroon 33
POINTS: White: Amanise Coleman 16, Ashley Bridges 7, Jackie Gonzales 6, Jaycie Orsak 8, Haley Orsak 5, Allison Dloughy 6, Callie Witte 11; Maroon: Brittany Wallace, 15; Desiree Garza 4, Lauren Rodriguez 5, Jacy Pawalek 2, Jaccarri Hights 15, Sydney Morris 6, Callie Carruth 5
3-POINTERS: White, Bridges 1, Witte 3; Maroon, Rodriguez 1, Hights 1
White 87, Maroon 75
HALFTIME: White 50, Maroon 31
POINTS: White, Jaron Johson 2, Joe Mireles 12, Jason Alonzo 12, Deondric Lofton 12, Deondric Lofton 11, Evan Wick 12, Walker Dowell 10, JR Shelby 2, Chris Erskine 8, Dravian Duncan 17; Maroon, Carl Roy 5, Kelsey Ortiz 8, Austin Sparks 16, Gunnar Ritchey 4, Dalton Sturm 7, Austin Alexander 20, Adam Konarik 2, Eli Espindola 2, Trevon Ramey 8 Wydell Robinson 1
3-POINTERS: White: Mireles 4, Lofton 1, Erskine 2, Duncan 4. Maroon: Roy 1, Sparks 1, Sturm 3, Alexander 4.