In the first game in which the Sealy Tigers basketball team has its full varsity roster, the team traveled on the road to take on the Gonzales Apaches and won 55-45. The team was missing nine players who were on the football team for the first two games of the season and now players like A.J. McGee, Tyrek McNeese and Kevon Keese have returned to the court.
The Tigers pulled out to a 23-16 lead at halftime but allowed Gonzales to get back into the game thanks to a 17-point third quarter to make it 36-33 heading into the final quarter. Sealy scored 19 points in that quarter to pull out the win.
Head Coach Ray Dabney said that while it is promising that the team was able to finish the game off after letting the Apaches back in it, there is still work to be done.
“These kids are just now practicing together as a team so it’s going to take time to put together the game plan and get them properly conditioned too,” Dabney said. “With the football guys, it’s not a huge advantage with conditioning that they’re going immediately from one sport to the other because a lot of them were only one-way players and basketball is such a constant sport compared to football.”
Dabney said one of the key things going forward for him will be pairing players’ strengths with each other which will come naturally as the team practices more together. Something the team is getting a lot of before they take on Sweeny to open up tournament play on Thursday.
“They beat each other up in practice for so long that when the time comes, they’re definitely ready to take on another team so yeah we’ll be good to go for the tournament,” Dabney said.
The team will play three consecutive days this weekend which will allow the team valuable opportunity to get a good amount of game experience in a short timeframe.
The tournament will be played in Schulenburg and the three games will be the team’s last until Dec. 19.