Mayde Creek High School, Rams, Texas high school boys basketball, Katy ISD

Pelzer powers Rams to OT win

By DENNIS SILVA II, Times Sports Editor
Posted 1/14/20

With 12.5 seconds left in overtime, and Mayde Creek inbounding from underneath its own basket while trailing Seven Lakes by a point, Rams junior guard Josh Vanegas took the inbounds pass and threw it right back to senior guard David Chavez.

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Mayde Creek High School, Rams, Texas high school boys basketball, Katy ISD

Pelzer powers Rams to OT win

Posted

With 12.5 seconds left in overtime, and Mayde Creek inbounding from underneath its own basket while trailing Seven Lakes by a point, Rams junior guard Josh Vanegas took the inbounds pass and threw it right back to senior guard David Chavez.

Chavez took it up the right side of the floor, past halfcourt, and a behind-the-back dribble briefly created separation between him and Seven Lakes defender Johnny Miller.

Chavez drove to the middle of the floor as Rams star guard Rommell Williams, face-guarded by Spartans senior wing Declan Kelly, served as a sort of brush screen at the top of the key, allowing Chavez some freedom toward the basket.

“When he set the screen, everything opened up and it was a 2-on-1 with me and (junior forward Anthony Pelzer),” Chavez said. “Coach had told Ant all day that he was going to have a big role to win the game, and we trusted him.”

Chavez dribbled around Williams’ screen and, right before the weakside defender who had attended to Pelzer approached to help, threw a perfect pass to a wide-open Pelzer.

“We didn’t want to force anything,” Pelzer said. “We had the clock to our advantage and just tried to get that last shot and make it. And we did.”

Pelzer’s 15-foot wing shot cradled through the net, time expired, and just like that Mayde Creek earned a 60-59 home win over the Spartans on Tuesday, Jan. 14, going to 2-1 in an intensely-competitive District 19-6A and sending Seven Lakes to 0-4 in district play.

The Spartans’ last two losses, against 3-1 Katy and 2-1 Mayde Creek, have come by a combined four points.

“This district is tough,” Mayde Creek coach Anthony Fobb said. “Seven Lakes is one of the best teams in our district; people just don’t know it. Night in and night out, those guys come to play for the love of the game. They’re not playing for scholarships. They give it all for their school, and it means something to them to play for Seven Lakes. That’s the culture I’m trying to build here.

“We’ve got to play night in and night out, because we’re the hunted now. We’re no longer the walkover game. Guys are coming out here trying to beat us, so if we don’t show up, we’re going to get beat.”

The Rams (15-11 overall) did show up, and they didn’t get beat.

After a dominant 19-point first half, Williams—a Midwestern State signee—was held to just two points in the second half and overtime as the Spartans went to Kelly face-guarding him the entire rest of the way.

That produced some good for both teams.

For Mayde Creek, other players, like Vanegas and junior guard Jermon Washington, stepped up. Vanegas calmly drilled a couple of big 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to keep the Rams steady.

But the defensive tactic, engineered by the tenacity of Kelly, also allowed Seven Lakes back into the game after it trailed by as many as 11 points in the third quarter. Sophomore guard Tahaad Davis took over in the second half by scoring 13 of his 16 points during that span. It was Davis’ runner in the waning seconds of regulation that forced overtime, 56-56.

Miller was also crucial, finishing with a game-high 25 points and a slew of key rebounds.

But after Kelly hit a huge 3 to put the Spartans up 59-56 in overtime, one last hero emerged for the Rams. Pelzer, who entered the game averaging 4.2 points, scored four of his nine points in the extra period: a tough rebound putback and the game-winner, the latter of which was a no-doubter in his mind.

“That’s morning workouts,” Pelzer said. “That’s work with the (shooting) gun. We’ll be up here, in the gym in the mornings, shooting those shots. That’s my shot. I knew it was going in.”

Chavez, whom Fobb said he is tougher on than any other Ram and looks to him to keep the team right, made the smart play.

“I had confidence he would make the shot,” Chavez said. “I could’ve been selfish; I could’ve shot the floater. But Ant had a better shot.”

For Fobb, it was a bit of redemption following the previous game, a 63-48 loss at Taylor.

“I missed him in the Taylor game,” Fobb said of Pelzer, who also had eight rebounds against Seven Lakes. “As a coach, I’m brutally honest with myself, and I let emotions and calls get to me and it fed on to the kids and I missed Anthony. He’s a major part of what we do, and he didn’t play much at all at Taylor and I felt bad about that after watching the film.

“I told him and told our guys, for what we need to do to beat Seven Lakes, he’s going to be a major part of it. I just kept giving him that confidence.”

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