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Current Conditions:
Mostly Cloudy, 85 F

Forecast:
Fri - Scattered Thunderstorms. High: 92 Low: 77
Sat - Thunderstorms. High: 95 Low: 78
Sun - Partly Cloudy. High: 96 Low: 78
Mon - Partly Cloudy. High: 95 Low: 77
Tue - Scattered Thunderstorms. High: 95 Low: 77

Full Forecast at Yahoo! Weather

(provided by The Weather Channel)

Friday Game of the Night: Palmview at Mission

District 30-5A boys basketball kicks off tonight and the race for the championships is, in many ways, an open race. Nikki Rowe won it last year but Sharyland has received a lot of the hype due to the duo known as the Pistokache Boys. However, the Rattlers have struggled to play on all cylinders.

One team who seems poised to make an ironic run for the title could be the Palmview Lobos, as a dark hourse. The Lobos are 15-3 and have come down with big wins over Weslaco and Harlingen High School. For a team that finished with only two district wins last year to be even considered a contender for a playoff spot is remarkable.

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Palmview blows out Rivera

20111216_Palmview-v-Brownsville-Rivera-Boys-Basketball_dy-034What a difference a year makes. Last year the Palmview boys basketball team was abysmal. They went 5-27 on the season and were pushed around by most everyone, not the least of which was Brownsville Rivera who beat the Lobos by 30 points. This year, Palmview is sporting an 11-3 record and a new confidence. After Tuesday night’s game in La Joya, Rivera is sporting a few bruises.

Palmview head coach Andy Saenz credits his team’s new identity to a new work-ethic.

“I didn’t get the job last year until August,” said Saenz. “This year, as soon as the season was over, we got in the gym the very next day and I got the kids playing in tournaments. They showed up every day to work.”

Against Rivera, the work paid off. Coming off a game against Grulla where, although eventually winning big, the Lobos started slow, Palmview was hoping to impose their will early against the Raiders. The engine of the Lobo offense, point-guard Mario de la Garza, was primed early. De la Garza was directly and indirectly responsible for the Lobos first seven points as he made a strong move to the basket on their first possession, a graceful off-balance bank shot on their second possession and a head’s-up outlet pass to Jaime Garza who sank a three-pointer.

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Mission man to tour with Harlem Globetrotters

20111209_AlexDeBarrio_GlobeTrottersWhen Alex Del Barrio was in high school he played basketball for the Mission Eagles. By his own admission he was no superstar although he was enthusiastic about sports and certainly committed.

“I wasn’t the best player but I was there and never missed practice,” said Del Barrio. “When I was a junior I broke my teeth diving for a ball. The specialist didn’t want me to play. The varsity team needed someone to announce the starting lineups for the games so I offered to do it. Afterwards the coach asked me to do it for all the rest of the games because I enjoyed it so much.”

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Sharyland team features brothers in the backcourt

20111209_Shary-v-San-Benito-069Most brothers spend their young adult years butting heads, forging their identities and their personal views often by contradiction to each other if not outright conflict. However, Sharyland varsity basketball starters, Joaquin and Jesse Pistokache, are a different breed of brother altogether.

Joaquin “Quino” Pistokache blazed the trail. Quino, the 6’2, 190 pound elder Pistokache, is a senior and a fourth-year starter on the Sharyland varsity basketball team. Quino, as older brothers often are, is a natural leader. In his second year as team Captain, Quino is the vocal leader of the team. Spend just a few minutes watching the Rattlers play and that much is obvious. Quino can be seen exhorting his teammates when they’re down and admonishing them when they’re wrong. But he can also be counted on to congratulate them when they succeed. However, lest you think Quino is merely a figurehead, he has also led the Rattlers in scoring for the past two seasons. Quino also leads the team in offseason workouts.

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Lady Patriots win first district game

20111202_VMHS-Girls-Basketball-018Now that all the preliminaries are out of the way, girls high school basketball has kicked into high gear as district play commences. Last Tuesday, in their first district game, the Mission Veterans Lady Patriots started strong with an impressive 29-50 win over Brownsville Veterans.

For Head Coach Rafael Cantu, this first win is just the latest in a season that has him fired up.

“I’m excited about this season and this team,” said Cantu. “We have a large returning group and that experience has helped us in a few games. We’re winning games at the end and holding leads. We’re making plays at the end of games that we need to make.”

Against the Brownsville Veterans Chargers, Cantu’s team certainly seemed the more comfortable team on the floor.

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La Joya drops close one against Edinburg

20111125-Boys-Basketball_dy-090It is often said that basketball is the roughest non-contact sport there is. You’d be hard-pressed to disagree if you happened to witness the 32-minute scrum in La Joya between the Coyotes and the Edinburg Bobcats Tuesday night.

When the dust had settled and the bodies had picked themselves off the floor for the last time it was Edinburg that came out on top 68-63.

The game began sloppy. Both Edinburg and La Joya fumbled at passes, double-dribbling and fouling their way up and down the court. La Joya’s Alex Alaniz early on seemed to be the only player on the court who could find the net as he put the Coyotes first and last points on the board with mid-range jumpers. At the end of the first quarter, La Joya found themselves ahead by four with a score of 9-13.

The Coyotes seemed intent on not giving up their slim margin as they came out in the second quarter in a full court press that frustrated the Bobcats. However, the frantic press seemed to also inadvertently make the Coyotes manic on offense as well.

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CoverageAreaThe Progress Times is the hometown newspaper for the local communities of Mission, Sharyland, Alton, Palmview, La Joya and surrounding areas in Western Hidalgo County. We have a staff of veteran reporters who work diligently every week to bring our readers the latest news as it affects their hometown area and people.

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