Needing to win out, with a little bit of help, the Gonzales Apaches have been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention after taking a 48-28 loss to San Antonio Veterans Memorial on Tuesday, Feb. 6.
The loss comes after another close loss, this one against top-district contending Wimberley on Friday, Feb 2. Head Coach A.J. Irwin called the game “the best basketball I’ve ever seen these guys played.”
On Friday, the Apaches took a surprising 9-8 lead to end the first quarter against the Texans.
“The last time we beat Wimberley was Feb. 25, 2003, a regional quarterfinal game,” Irwin explained. “We won 70-64 and that game sent us to the regional tournament where we ended up losing in the regional final to Aransas Pass.”
But the Apaches had three more quarters to play to accomplish something they haven’t done all district season.
“I told the guys, ‘you know what our problem is right now?’” Irwin recounted. “And they’re saying different things, ‘we’re missing block outs’ ‘we’re missing free throws’ ‘we’re missing layups.’ I’m like, ‘all those things, you’re correct, but that’s not what I’m looking for.’ They’re like, ‘well what?’ I look at the scoreboard, they look up, I say ‘the only problem we’ve got is there’s still time on the clock,’ and they got a kick out of that.”
The Texans would pull away in the second quarter, ending the half up 35-25. The Apaches would keep pace in the third quarter, still within 10 entering the final period. Ultimately, foul troubles, among other growing pains would be too much to overcome as Wimberley won the game by 18, a 66-48 decision.
“I think [that game] speaks volumes to where these guys are in terms of growth as basketball players, but not only as basketball players, their leadership,” Irwin said.
“Some things don’t go out way, and that’s going to happen in anything, even in life,” he continued. “But I think these boys handled the adversity well and it was a game all the way down to the end. I’ve never seen that Wimberley coach so frustrated, ever. Especially playing against us. We just — I’m extremely proud of where these boys have gotten.”
Trevion McNeil ended that night with a double-double, scoring 16 points and 11 rebounds. He added two assists and one steal to the stat sheet. Eight total players scored points, including sophomore Mason Richter who had eight points, one rebound and three steals and Contrell Smith who had six points, two rebounds, one assist and a team-leading three steals.
On Tuesday night, needing a win and some teams to lose, the Apaches lost by 20 to San Antonio Veterans Memorial, eliminating Gonzales from playoff contention. The Apaches drop down to 0-8, with two more district games left in the season. They take on Austin Eastside Memorial (5-3) at home on Friday, then travel to play Navarro (3-5) on Tuesday in hopes of playing spoiler.
|SA Veterans Memorial||3||5||0.375|