Lady Tigers give back to Little Dribblers

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After a pair more of district losses, athletes on the Lady Tiger basketball squad got to enjoy things from the sideline perspective and coach some youngsters from around town over the weekend.

Little Dribblers took over the gym as kids in all grades from elementary school to junior high separated into different teams to compete against one another week in and week out.

Sealy High head coach Anthony Branch oversees the Little Dribbler program as a whole and decided to get his players involved as well.

“I’ve been telling them, ‘Y’all need to give back too,’” Branch noted. “But they really wanted to, they had some fun and I’m excited to hear how they enjoyed coaching and if they have any remorse for me sharing that same sideline.”

He added it was an enjoyable thing all around to help begin to groom the next basketball stars of Sealy High School as the best from all of the teams will eventually converge, possibly under Branch’s watchful eye down the road.

That is a sight that will remain to be seen as this school year needs to commence before anything else happens.

In any case, it was another unsuccessful week for the Lady Tigers on the basketball court, falling to Fulshear (34-27) and Stafford (42-32) to remain in a tie for fifth place, just outside the playoff picture, with Needville and Fulshear sharing 1-5 records in district play.

It was Chargers from Fulshear who paid a visit to Sealy in the early-week matchup and notched their first district win as a varsity program by holding the host Lady Tigers to only 11 points in the second half.

However, things started out tight with both squads only registering single digits in the first frame of play and both leading scorers finished the quarter with five points. Senior Diari Dabney scored all but one of Sealy’s six points and Kylie Ashman supplied five of the eight points on the visitors’ side of the scoreboard.

Ashman added to the lead to open the second quarter only for junior Zoee Jeffrey to singlehandedly grab a lead for the Lady Tigers, going on a six-point tangent with the final four points coming off consecutive steals leading to fast-break layups and a 12-10 lead for the hosts.

By the time the halftime buzzer sounded, it was only a four-point deficit for Sealy and a slow third frame for the Chargers nearly put the Lady Tigers back in the game.

Fulshear only grabbed one bucket but Sealy scored five points, just shy of tying the game at 22 heading into the last quarter of play.

But the Chargers came out firing to open the third and inflated their lead with less and less time on the clock, eventually building to an insurmountable lead without enough time to come all the way back.

For Branch, he saw the loss as another in a pile of defeats that his team had a shot at flipping the script and coming out victorious.

Instead, they fell just short and he only wished had had the right words to say to turn things around.

“I won’t sit there yelling, they just need to figure out if they want to win or not,” Branch noted. “That’s the bottom line, we gotta do things we’re coached.”

That sour feeling was only made worse when they made their trip down to Stafford where coach noted nearly all of the opponents’ points came in the second-chance variety.

Either turnovers or rebounds led to 40 of the Spartans’ 42 points and again Branch knows teams cannot win putting up those kinds of splits.

But he added that he goes over the scouting reports from each game with his team and that they have not lost their fighting spirit and retain a coachable attitude.

“They still expect to win, they’re still working on things,” Branch said. “It’s been tough, yeah, but nobody’s pointing fingers or blaming anyone else, they’re in it together.”

That comradery will only continue to develop in this home-stretch of games that will conclude on the fifth of February with the matchup against Stafford.

Branch feels as though if they are able to eliminate the mistakes and focus on their game; “We very well could go 5-1 over the next stretch.”

Their first chance started against the Lady Jays of Needville who remain in the lower tier of the standings as well.

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