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Sharyland beginning to groove, overcoming distractions

20120113_Shary_BasketballPerhaps 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.


Big Six Friday Game of the Night: Rio Grande City at Juarez-Lincoln

For the second year in a row the Juarez-Lincoln Huskies are fighting for a playoff spot. Last year’s basketball team competed hard but still fell two places short of a playoff spot in District 32-4A. The one team ahead of them was Rio Grande City, tonight’s opponent a year later.

At just 2-6, the Rattlers’ chance of a postseason appearance is all but out of reach. However, for the Huskies every game counts, including tonights.  Currently tied for fourth but in a dead heat race with Edcouch-Elsa and Brownsville Veterans Memorial, Juarez is forced to beat the teams it is supposed to while pulling an upset here and there.


“Big Six” Q&A with JeNeva Jimenez

Veterans Memorial High School senior JeNeva Jimenez just finished playing her final season of high school volleyball, where she led the Patriots to a 25-7, 16-2 season record, a second place finish in District 32-4A and a Bi-District appearance. In December, the district’s Offensive MVP as well as a second team All-Valley performer, decided to take her skills to the next level by signing with Lindenwood University in Belleville, Illinois. We were able to catch up with the outsider hitter to ask her about her future.

Ten Questions


“Big Six” Tuesday Night Recap: Big crowd, big defense and big shots in Shary win over Memorial

MISSION -- Freshman Jesse Pistokache took some verbal shots from a hostile Memorial road crowd last night, but it was his own shots and cool play that led his Sharyland team to victory. The frosh hit two free-throws in the final minute to put frosting on his 16 points and the icing to his team’s 44-35 win.

For head coach David Keith, he was happy to get the win, especially because “we finished [the game].”


Report: Sharyland's Fred Sanchez to retire

According to The Monitor, Sharyland High School's head football coach Fred Sanchez has decided to retire. The newspaper quoted athletic director Richard Thompson as saying, "He's put in 30 years (coaching). He told me this is something that he's been thinking about and praying about."

If the report is true, Sanchez will retire as one of the Rio Grande Valley's top coaches. Year in and year out his teams have put forth some of the Valley's best squads, especially recently. In 2008 the team finished second in District 30-5A and then won two postseason games. In 2009 and 2010 his teams finished the year as district champions. This past year Shary placed second.

Also to note is the impact Sanchez has had on coaches around the Valley as many have coached under the Rio Grande City native, such as Mission's Mario Pena. 

The Progress Times will have more information in the coming days. 

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