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Growing pains plague Bulldogs in Billie tourney

By Sandy Jennings BCC Contributor

Whole in One Photography
Bandera Bulldog Varsity Boys team includes, standing, Assistant Coach Tyler Wanek, Landry Kinsel, Nick Salas, Head Coach Bob Shearhart, Andrew Garza, Connor Chessir and Assistant Coach Scott Edwards; sitting, Ethan George, Tryston Butler, Jeremiah Silone, JT Milner, Alex Cardenas, Ruben Vargas and Dylan Bess.

Over the holidays, Bandera's Varsity Bulldogs Basketball traveled to Fredericksburg to compete in the Holiday Classic Tournament where they faced four tough teams, unable to bring home a victory.
"Growing pains are still plaguing us," Head Coach Bob Shearhart said.
Shearhart has spent this season working on tightening up the defense and strengthening the outside perimeter shot.
In the first game of the tournament on Dec. 28, Bandera faced the Harper Longhorns. After the first quarter, the Dogs trailed 13-17. Three's by JT Milner and Nick Salas kept the Dogs close, with Salas and Josh Ripple both hitting another two-pointer.
The second quarter was closer with the Longhorns edging the 'Dogs 16-15 to take a half time lead of nine to the locker room. Salas scored 4 more points, Ethan George scored 4, and Landry Kinsel hit a 3.
"Harper's two 6'6'' players were too much to handle in the second half," Shearhart said.
The Longhorns outscored the Dogs in the third while Tryston Butler scored 5 in the quarter, and Ripple hit another basket to tally Bandera's 7 points.
The fourth quarter saw the Longhorns outscore the Dogs again. George had 4 points in the quarter, Alex Cardenas hit a 3, and Jeremiah Silone knocked down a bucket to finish the last quarter. The final score found Bandera trailing 40-60.
"Rebounding and critical mistakes hampered us throughout the game," Shearhart said.
In the second game of the day, Bandera played a strong St. Dominic Savio team that lit up the 'Dogs for 24 points in the first quarter, while Bandera scored 11.
Milner had 5 in the quarter, Salas had 4, and Ripple hit a couple of free throws.
"In the second quarter, we dug an even deeper hole with second chance points, turnovers and missed shots," Shearhart said.
"Offensively, we came out stronger in the second half, but defensively we could not slow down Savio," Shearhart said.
In the third quarter, Kinsel hit two more 3's, Butler and Milner each hit a 3, George made another 2, and Salas made a free throw.
The fourth quarter finally saw the Dogs out score Savio 13-9. Salas hit a couple of 3's, Cardenas hit a shot and made a free throw, and George and Kinsel each hit a bucket.
Bandera's final score was 47 to Savio's 73.
On Tuesday, the Bulldogs returned to Fredericksburg for the final day of the Holiday Classic. The noon game had the Dogs facing off against the Canyon Lake Hawks.
The first quarter saw a rain of 3 pointers from both sides. Cardenas hit two of them, and Salas and Milner each hit one. George and Ripple each scored 2 points to give the Dogs 16 points on the quarter to the Hawks 19.
The second quarter saw the scoring drop off on both sides. Milner hit two more three's and Cardenas scored a bucket for Bandera's total.
While the scoring picked up in the third quarter, Bandera could not close the gap in the total point column. George and Silone each had 4 points in the quarter, while Dylan Bess and Salas each scored two. The 'Dogs faced a deficit going in to the fourth quarter. Bandera scored 20 points in the quarter while holding the Hawks to 15, closing the gap to 56-64 with the Hawks on top.
Salas scored 8 in the quarter, Cardenas 6, George 4, and Ripple 2.
The final game for Bandera was against the Burnet Bulldogs. Burnet opened up a lead early by outscoring Bandera 17-6 in the first quarter. Salas scored 4 points and Cardenas scored 2.
The 'Dogs allowed 17 more points to Burnet in the second quarter. Salas and Milner each hit a 3, and George and Butler each scored 2.
Down 34-16 at the half, Bandera was looking for baskets in the third quarter, but was only able to muster 5 points while giving up 18.
"Lack of rebounding and poor shot selection helped Burnet build a 31 point lead," Shearhart said.
In the third quarter, Butler and George each made a bucket, and Silone made one out of two free throws.
In the final quarter, Bandera took a bite out of the lead outscoring Burnet 14-4, but the deficit was too great and Bandera trailed at the final buzzer.
Andrew Garza scored 6, Salas had 5, and George and Cardenas each hit a 2 pointer. Bandera's next game will be on Jan. 8, in Bandera against the same Burnet Bulldogs.