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Wildcat basketball opens with win over Taylor 57-43

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    Wildcat Josh Sides (#5) works around a defender. Photos by Ron Ramirez
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    Adrian Jaimes (#1) drives to the basket.
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    Head Coach John Howie gives instructions to his squad.

“They say that nobody is perfect. Then they say that practice makes perfect. I wish they would make up their minds.” – NBA Hall of Fame player Wilt Chamberlin

It is always just a little extra nice to start your season with a “W” after your first game. It is in fact the first time you have run your offense against someone besides your own teammates. For the coaches, it is their first chance to see if what they have had their kids practicing has made any lasting impression on how they play.

For the eight players that made up the Elgin (1-0) team, they ran the designed plays well enough to take a close game after the first quarter, and make it a comfortable win at the end.

First-year Head Coach John Howie expects to add depth to his team when he picks up a few more players after football season is over, but this game was about the eight young men who were there and played.

“This right now is an extremely young team," Howie said. "I currently have only one senior, three juniors, two sophomores and two freshmen.”

Howie said he is constantly in teaching mode. He is intense but wants his kids to learn from every good play as well as every bad play. He is loud. There is no doubt about who is the coach in that gym. But I saw him take time outs specifically to take a moment to put his arms around a player and teach him how to make the next opportunity better for the team.

The Wildcats and the Ducks from Taylor played a pretty even first quarter, but the 'Cats started pulling away after that and ended the half with a 33-20 lead. Timely jump shots from the perimeter players like Gregory Aguirre (14 points), Josh Sides (14 points) and Adrian Jaimes (10 points) kept the 'Cats in good shape, and strong play underneath the board from Bo Gary (six points, 18 rebounds and five blocked shots) and Aiden Beckett helped ensure Elgin kept the lead until the end.

The third period ended with Elgin holding a 14-point edge 41-27 and the final had Elgin with 57 and Taylor with 43 points. Players Luke Gomez, Jacob Sides and Jose Arriaga added valuable points and defensive stops as well.

Elgin will play in District 18 5A along with Manor, Bastrop, Cedar Creek, Pflugerville Hendrickson, Pflugerville Weiss, Pflugerville Connally and Pflugerville High. Coach Howie expects the favorites to be Weiss and Manor, but he feels the rest of the teams will all be very competitive with each other. Elgin is lacking in true height at this time, but maybe more will be added soon.

The Wildcats will host Round Rock Westwood on Tuesday, November 17 and then play host to Bryan Rudder on Friday, November 20. They will travel to Belton to play on Tuesday, November 24. Currently the games are scheduled for 5:30 and 7 p.m. for Varsity, but are subject to change later in the year.


Girls' basketball starts Friday

The Elgin girls' high school basketball starts Friday evening, November 20 when they travel to Snook High School to take on the Lady Bluejays, starting at 6:15 p.m. They host Lampasas at 7 p.m. on Monday evening, November 23 and play a morning contest at 10:30 a.m. at Hays High School on Tuesday, November 24.