Basketball: Dreams dashed at Denton Shootout basketball tourney

07:08 AM CDT on Monday, July 19, 2010
By Matthew Muench/Staff Writer
The North Texas Dreams played near flawless ball during pool play on Saturday and had few troubles during bracket play on Sunday at the Denton Summer Shootout.
But then they woke up.
DRC/David Minton
Argyle’s Wes King, left, tries to wrestle a loose ball away from Liberty Christian’s Ryan Wilkerson at the Denton Summer Shootout on Saturday at Argyle High School.
Their dream turned into a small dose of reality by losing to Primetime, a select-team from Oklahoma, in the championship game 37-25 in the girls 11th-12th grade bracket at Ryan High School.
It was the Dreams’ first loss of the tournament.
“We just fell a little short,” Dreams coach Roger Weber said. “We didn’t shoot the ball well. I have a lot of 3-point shooters on this team and we just weren’t able to hit any shots to put us in position to win.”
The Dreams only scored three points the final seven minutes of the game after it had cut the lead to 22-20.
Primetime also scored all of its points in the paint against a Dreams team that has been playing in tournaments almost every other weekend since March.
“We have played in quite a few tournaments,” said Weber, who has coached the select team for 18 years. “This core group right here really plays well together. We are always finals material. In the tournaments we have played in, we either lost to the eventual champion early or we played for the championship.”
The team consists of an all-star studded cast featuring athletes from Denton County including Krum, Ponder and Sanger.
Graduated Krum seniors Erin Dickson and Kirsti Degelia also were able to play because the tournament was not NCAA sanctioned. Degelia, who will play for Midwestern State next season, led the Dreams with 12 points.
“It has been fun with Erin and Kirsti and we are sad to see them go,” Weber said. “But we have a lot of good players coming up. Denton County has a lot of really talented girls basketball players and the area high school coaches do a tremendous job coaching them.”
 
Ryan girls struggle in bracket play after winning their pool
Ryan won its pool on Saturday by going 2-1, but it struggled on Sunday in the championship bracket.
The Lady Raiders lost their first-round game and then fell in the consolation championship.
A big reason could have been that star guard De’Amber Wilhite was unable to hit the hardwood on Sunday for unknown reasons.
But Ryan head coach Monesha Allen still said it was a good experience for her team heading into next season.
“It is always good to get in the gym and play together to build chemistry,” said Allen, who did not coach the team this weekend per UIL rules. “In the summer is a good time to see your mistakes and fix them.”
 
Argyle falls in semifinals
No area team reached the championship of the 11th and 12th grade boys bracket at Argyle.
But Argyle came close.
The Eagles were knocked out of contention in the semifinals when they lost 46-45 to the Tulsa Hustlers in overtime despite a big second-half comeback led by Clarke Overlander.
Argyle head boys basketball coach Jon King did not coach the team per UIL rules but said he enjoyed watching the core of his varsity play during the weekend.
“I am pretty proud of the kids,” King said. “They played well against really good competition.And that was what you like to see. “
The semifinal loss was one of three overtime games the Eagles played, including a double-overtime win over Broken Arrow, a 6A team in Oklahoma.
“That was a great win,” King said. “Someone told me that Broken Arrow had a graduating class of 1,200 last year. So to beat a bigger school like them is rewarding.”
 
Other area boys teams struggle
Last year Ponder and Liberty Christian made nice runs in the Denton Summer Shootout. The Lions lost in the semifinals of the championship bracket while the Warriors won the consolation bracket title.
In 2010, Ponder struggled to get out of pool play and then lost its only two games in bracket play.
Liberty, which was playing with five new starters, did not reach the championship bracket but won two games in the consolation bracket before losing in the semifinals.
Krum, which was coached by former player Justin Wallace, struggled during the tournament. The Bobcats finished the weekend 0-5.
 
Shootout a success
Allen, who helped host the event, said she was glad her school was selected to field the girls teams.
“It is a great fundraiser for the city and it’s great for kids of all ages to get to play basketball,” she said. “I’m happy I get to do this and at the same time watch my kids play.”
Eight different high schools and middle schools hosted the city-wide event that had almost 200 teams from across the state. Out of state teams from Wyoming, Arkansas and even Colorado traveled to Denton for the event.
“I think teams see that it is a good tournament with good competition,” King said. “And teams that do travel this far always bring a quality players.”
MATTHEW MUENCH can be reached at 940-566-6868. His e-mail address is mmuench@dentonrc.com .