Lobos show improvement at Hays CISD Classic

A 3-2 mark over a three-day period was how the Lehman Lobos finished the 2017 Hays CISD Classic, which was held Nov. 29-Dec.2.

The Lobos competed against Round Rock, Cedar Creek, LBJ Austin, Thorndale and Poth in the tournament.

Head coach James Halatin said his team played well against the different playing styles throughout the tournament.

“The good thing about tournaments is that you’re going to see a bunch of different teams with different styles,” Halatin said. “We just wanted as a younger team to be able to adapt to the different styles of the different teams that they were going to show us.”

Lehman High senior Zakya Jarden fights for the ball near the baseline during a pool play game against the Cedar Creek Eagles at the Hays CISD Classic. (photo by Moses Leos III)

Lehman Lobo senior guard Maggie Castillo (left, 5) dribbles past a Cedar Creek player near center court as time was expiring in the first half of a Hays CISD Classic pool play game at the Lobo Den. (photo by Moses Leos III )

While the Lobos lost to Round Rock (42-29) and Poth (49-31), Halatin felt it was a step up from last year. In 2016, Lehman went 1-4 in the Hays CISD Classic.

Halatin said his team is buying in to becoming a better team.

“These girls are changing their perception of Lehman as far as basketball goes, and they’re working hard to do it,” Halatin said. “They practice every day and we never have any issues. They are all bought in and the only way that you’re going to turn the program around is if everybody is bought in.”

With playing in a tournament, the team establishes more chemistry before heading into the regular season.

The Lobos are 7-8 so far, and have different areas to improve on as the season progresses.

“We could probably do a better job at ball control and moving the ball,” Halatin said. “Sometimes our offense gets a little stagnant. We saw some zones, we saw some man and we have the tendency to hold the ball and read instead of being confident and know what we know we can do.”

Moving the ball more on offense is something to work on for the Lobos, but the Lobos also showed progress on defense as well.

In the two games against Cedar Creek and LBJ, the team beat both opponents by a 20-point margin.

With such a close team, Halatin said the Lobos motivate themselves to get better every day.

Halatin said at practices and during pregame, his team is excited to be around each other.

“They just enjoy being around each other and they really want to be better,” Halatin said. “They don’t want to just go through the motions. They don’t want to do that, they want to be better, they want to improve on where Lehman basketball has been over the course.”

The Lobos now look toward the team’s Dec. 8 contest against Akins at 7 p.m.

“These first couple of days this week we’re going to work on us,” Halatin said. “Not so much execution as a team, but the player as far as making sure your feet are set up on a shot, making sure you can move without the ball. Just a lot of drills for the individual to really help us on our team concept later on in the week.”

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