Friday, 13 January 2012 12:36
Perhaps it is a bit ironic that adding one player—a freshman at that—can entirely change the way outsiders view a basketball program. However, that was the case at Sharyland High School when Jesse Pistokache appeared on Coach David Keith’s roster. The appearance prompted the media here in the Rio Grande Valley to choose the Rattlers as the Valley’s top team entering the season.
To an extent, the high expectations were not out of line. Pistokache is regarded as a future big-time college recruit—almost unheard of here in South Texas—and has proved his play by competing for national championships on his AAU squad, the Texas Titans. Add in interviews with Slam Magazine and prestigious camps on the East Coast and you have an expectation accompanying your name. Freshman or not, a number one ranking was stamped on Shary before the team had even begun to prove itself.
To Coach Keith, the top ranking was ironic since his team the year before was a more veteran squad with more playing experience. This year’s team no longer had all-district point guard and captain, Fred Ramos, or Matt Ramirez or Brendan Quinn. Last year’s team finished fourth in district play and lost in bi-district to Laredo United.