GONZALES — The Gonzales Lady Apaches had their final tune-up game before district play began, knocking off Flatonia 35-23 in what proved to be a top defensive effort by the squad Tuesday night at home.
Having not played a home game since Nov. 10 — which happened to be their only home game of the season in 2017 — the Lady Apaches were faced with a task to beat Flatonia for the third time this season. Head Coach William Ramsey noted the difficulty in doing it, while also praising her girls for winning what ended up being an “ugly” game.
“It’s tough to beat a team three times, so they knew how to match up with us in some areas,” he said. “The girls are playing well right now. If we put the ball in the hole a little better, we probably would have had a bigger win. Sometimes you play ugly and still win.”
Indeed the lead could have been much worse, as the Lady Apaches shot out to an 8-0 run, before conceding seven points to the visitors. This would be the closest Flatonia would get, as Gonzales ended the half on a 7-0 run, going into the locker room with a 15-7 lead, allowing no points in the second quarter.
“We’re learning to play as a team,” Ramsey said. “Everyone is learning their role on defense and what’s asked of them. Especially here lately, we’ve been doing a really good job as a team defense, finding the other team’s weapons and shutting those done. They had one very good player and of course we did a very good job of limiting her looks. Just playing strong defense, limiting their shots and crashing the boards on defense has been a major factor.”
The points started to rain in the third quarter, as the Lady Apaches doubled their points, scoring 15 in the third frame with shots coming in from McCarty, Devon Williams, Hailey Riojas, Kayley Martinez and Chelsie Hastings. The Lady Apaches were able to limit Flatonia to just four points that quarter, gaining their biggest lead of the game up 30-11.
“We did a good job on the boards, liming what [Flatonia have] been doing,” Ramsey explained.
Flatonia cut the lead in the fourth, outscoring Gonzales 12-5, though the Lady Apaches would hold on for that 12-point win.
The win sets up Gonzales well for a tough district, as they are matched with San Antonio Veterans Memorial, Navarro, La Vernia, Wimberley and Austin Eastside Memorial. In this week’s Class 4A Texas Association of Basketball Coaches (TABC) rankings, Navarro is ranked 18th while SA Veterans Memorial is 23rd.
“District is really tough with Veterans Memorial [as] one of the top teams in state,” Ramsey noted. “Of course, you have Navarro and La Vernia who are always at the top 25, there’s Wimberley, [another] strong team. For us it comes down to beating the teams we have to beat when the time comes and a lot comes down to our offense. If our offense is scoring, our defense is doing their job, we put the ball in the hole, we got a good chance to beat some teams. We got some pretty good shooters in our district overall, every team has two or three very good shooters and we’re just learning as a team how to shoot the ball, so we don’t have anybody who’s a knock-down person yet, but we’re getting there as a team offensively.”
The Lady Apaches open district on the road as they take on Austin Eastside on Friday, with tipoff set at 6:30 p.m. They then host Navarro on Tuesday, with tipoff set at 6:30 p.m.