Warriors halfway to being district champs
Jan. 10, 2014 at 10:03 p.m.
Updated Jan. 9, 2014 at 7:10 p.m.
For two years, Allyson Dlouhy had to see Victoria West be on the losing side of games.
The senior knew, however, the Warriors would get back to the success they saw the first year of existence. Friday night, the Warriors became closer to their goal of being District 30-4A champions.
The Warriors defeated Gregory-Portland 69-43 to improve to 6-0 in district play with a overall 20-4 record on the season.
"It's definitely an honor being my senior year and actually getting out and going somewhere," the three-year varsity player said, "We've been in the bottom for the last two years. It feels amazing. It's the same team as last year, so that helps us a lot."
One of three seniors on the team, Dlouhy believed in the success that Warriors coach Sandra Jimenez knew the team would have. Dlouhy finished with 14 points - one of three players in double figures.
"It's these same group of kids that took the lumps and the losses for two years," Jimenez said. "And now, three of them are seniors. And I think that they've learned to lead, and we have the right combination of kids, and that's why I think we have been successful this year."
Success for the Warriors, Jimenez said, has come from the seniors who have been able to lead the team through difficult points in games. But Jimenez was quick to note the supporting cast that surrounds the seniors.
"All we've been doing is getting better," said junior Tiana Davila, who finished with 14 points. "You have to have strong teammates to help you have a strong mindset. Our seniors are helping us by talking to us, letting us know our mistakes, telling us our mistakes from another teammates' point of view instead of being yelled at by our coach."
The Warriors had runs of 12 and 16 points, while maintaining as much as a 21-point lead. The runs by the Warriors completely left the Ladycats (13-12, 3-3) unable to mount any sort of comeback.
Though the Warriors enjoyed a large lead in the second half, the game remained fairly close. The Ladycats nailed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to go into halftime down by 10. But West eliminated any attempts of a possible comeback.
After missing out on the playoffs the last two seasons, Dlouhy believes the Warriors have a chance to make this season special. For her, winning has been long overdue. Now, the Warriors are halfway to potentially becoming District 30-4A champions.
"It's going to be a dog fight," Dlouhy said. "We got a big old target on our back. We're leading the district, so everybody is coming out for us. We just have to go out and take care of business every night."
On a night when Victoria West struggled offensively, the team managed to pull together a 42-30 victory over Gregory-Portland on Friday.
The Wildcats held the Warriors to 21 points at halftime and led by six points.
"We kind of slowed down," said junior Mason Marshall said. "One of the keys coach (Pat Erskine) made, he told us to really push the ball, and we kind of got away from that. It let them (Gregory-Portland) set up their defense."
Marshall finished with 10 points while sophomore Ruben Trevino finished with a team-high 12. The victory improved the Warriors to a 4-1 record in District 30-4A play with a 16-8 overall record on the season.
"There were times we thought we could take over at any point," said Warriors coach Erskine. "We didn't get in a rhythm. I don't think we ever got in a rhythm of offense. They kind of did a good job of mixing their defense up."
Marshall, however, believed even with the struggles the team had Friday, it's a lesson learned.
"We can't get overconfident because once we get overconfident, we'll take things lightly," Marshall said. "We just got to take it one game at a time."