This was a fruitful year for Hays and Lehman, as their women’s basketball teams both had winning campaigns.
Lehman Lady Lobos
Lehman High had an inspirational year, as head coach Jamie Coy led her Lobos to an 18-18 record – an improvement over the previous two seasons, where the Lady Lobos only garnered 21 wins.
Remarkable play by seniors shaped the season. Led by seniors Ashley Stephens, Karsholyn Brown and Bria Cheatham, the Lobos played with a powerful offensive attack, overwhelming the staunchest of opponents with dominant interior presence.
Defensively, the Lobos were diligent, harassing opponents to commit turnovers. The highlight of the defense’s season came on Senior Night, when the Lady Lobos forced Lockhart into 23 turnovers, en route to a 72-37 win.
The efforts paid off , giving Lehman a chance at a playoff spot. They tied Boerne Champion for fourth, forcing a one-game district tiebreaker.
In that game, Lehman made a courageous effort, rallying to get within one possession late in the contest. However, Champion proved to be too much in the 57-55 loss, ending Lehman’s season.
This was a groundbreaking season for the Lobos. Junior guard Olivia Marzullo said, “I’m proud of our season; it was one of the best seasons in girls’ team history. It is difficult to know that we will not make the playoffs, but I am proud of how my teammates worked this year … how we all worked so hard to get to where we are now.”
For the third year in a row under head coach Danny Preuss, the Hays High Lady Rebels earned a trip to postseason, completing the season with a 25-9 record.
This year was the pinnacle, as the Lady Rebels earned the title of Co-Champions in the difficult 27-4A district.
“Winning a district title was one of our goals before the season, and we did accomplish that. We knew there were good teams night in and night out, and we always had to bring our ‘A’ game,” said Preuss.
The highlight of the season? When the Lady Rebels upset then-state ranked Schertz Clemens 64-39 in a raucous Bales Gym.
Hays’ defense was the leading factor to their success, as Hays had a penchant for stifling opposing offenses. Prior to the playoff game against San Antonio Brackenridge, the Lady Rebs allowed only 35 points per game, helped out by Jordyne Duggar and Jill Borreson. Their presence in the paint created issues for many teams.
Offensively, Hays had standout perimeter shooting from all of the players.
“Any girl on any given night could have been the leading scorer. It is good to have a well balanced team because the opponent does not know who to key on,” said Press, describing the parity in scoring, which was key to the Rebel’s success.
Those attributes helped in postseason, where the Rebels faced off against SA Brackenridge. Hays fought with heart, but were defeated by the state-ranked Lady Eagles 61-35.
Preuss and the Hays players were excited at the finish of the season, saying expectations within the Lady Rebel basketball program are always at a high level.
“It was great to make the playoffs, but we expect more. We need to be a team that sustains long playoff runs. Success is expected at Hays; the girls know that and work hard to achieve this,” Preuss said. “We had a good season. We finished with lots of wins and a district championship.”
Correction: Hays’ overall record was incorrectly reported as 24-10 in the Bi-District playoff article last week. The Rebels finished with a 25-9 record. Apologies for the oversight.