News and Announcements
As you may know, Clear Lake Basketball Hall of Fame member, 1972-73 Falcon MVP, and current Deer Park head basketball coach Billy Carlisle was diagnosed with a rare brain disorder last season which required surgeries. Billy missed almost the entire season last year but is back this season in his role as head coach with the ferver we have come to expect from the former Falcon star. Last Tuesday at the Deer Park game Billy suffered a seizure due to not taking his medication and was taken by ambulance to the hospital where he remains (as of Sunday morning) for observation. He is expected to be released soon. Please keep Coach Carlisle in your thoughts and prayers. We look forward to seeing Coach Carlisle back in the gym soon.
The Clear Lake Falcons met the Brazoswood Buccaneers for the first time this season in the second district game for both teams. The Falcons never trailed as they put on an impressive defensive exhibition led by Nandi Wijay and Connor Atchley who each had 4 steals. At the end of the first quarter, the Falcons led 13-6. At the half it was 29-15. In the third quarter the Falcons, continued their smothering defense (14 steals total for the game) but cranked up their offense to outscore the Buccs 28 to 13 in the period. Understandably, the Buccaneers had no solution to stopping Falcons 6'11' post man Connor Atchley who went 7 for 9 from the field, but the Bucs also fell short when it came to stopping Turbo Wijay who went 5 of 6 from the field and Micah Walker who went 4 for 4. Notice the Falcons scored as much in the 3rd quarter as their opponents scored in three quarters. Not just the guards looked like a bunch of speed demons as they raced around the court in a defensive frenzy throughout the game but the big men often got in on the act as well. Offensively, the Falcons held their turnovers to less than 10 for the first time this season but their free throw shooting fell short (5 of 11). Scoring for the Falcons: Atchley 17, Wijay 12, Walker 9, Greenwood 8, Rieke 6, Mitchell 5, Oswald 5, Cerny 4, Abner 2. In other district action, Clear Brook beat Creek at Brook and Alvin beat Galveston Ball.
What's the difference between Divisions I, II and III colleges? Division I Division I member institutions have to sponsor at least seven sports for men and seven for women (or six for men and eight for women) with two team sports for each gender. Each playing season has to be represented by each gender as well. There are contest and participant minimums for each sport, as well as scheduling criteria. For sports other than football and basketball, Div. I schools must play 100% of the minimum number of contests against Div. I opponents -- anything over the minimum number of games has to be 50% Div. I. Men's and women's basketball teams have to play all but two games against Div. I teams, for men, they must play 1/3 of all their contests in the home arena. Schools that have football are classified as Div. I-A or I-AA. I-A football schools are usually fairly elaborate programs. Div. I-A teams have to meet minimum attendance requirements (17,000 people in attendance per home game, OR 20,000 average of all football games in the last four years or, 30,000 permanent seats in their stadium and average 17,000 per home game or 20,000 average of all football games in the last four years OR, be in a member conference in which at least six conference members sponsor football or more than half of football schools meet attendance criterion. Div. I-AA teams do not need to meet minimum attendance requirements. Div. I schools must meet minimum financial aid awards for their athletics program, and there are maximum financial aid awards for each sport that a Div. I school cannot exceed. Division II Division II institutions have to sponsor at least four sports for men and four for women, with two team sports for each gender, and each playing season represented by each gender. There are contest and participant minimums for each sport, as well as scheduling criteria -- football and men's and women's basketball teams must play at least 50% of their games against Div. II or I-A or I-AA opponents. For sports other than football and basketball there are no scheduling requirements. There are not attendance requirements for football, or arena game requirements for basketball. There are maximum financial aid awards for each sport that a Div. II school must not exceed. Division II teams usually feature a number of local or in-state student-athletes. Many Division II student-athletes pay for school through a combination of scholarship money, grants, student loans and employment earnings. Division II athletics programs are financed in the institution's budget like other academic departments on campus. Traditional rivalries with regional institutions dominate schedules of many Division II athletics programs. Division III Division III institutions have to sponsor at least five sports for men and five for women, with two team sports for each gender, and each playing season represented by each gender. There are minimum contest and participant minimums for each sport. Division III athletics features student-athletes who receive no financial aid related to their athletic ability and athletic departments are staffed and funded like any other department in the university. Division III athletics departments place special importance on the impact of athletics on the participants rather than on the spectators. The student-athlete's experience is of paramount concern. Division III athletics encourages participation by maximizing the number and variety of athletics opportunities available to students, placing primary emphasis on regional in-season and conference competition.
In high school basketball some things are unexplainable. Like how can a team ranked 19th in the state (out of approximately 320 teams) be outplayed by an unranked team with an 11-11 season record? Once again the axiom of “On any given day, in high school basketball, anything is possible” has been proven to be true. The Clear Lake Falcons started district play with a thriller against Alvin Tuesday night. After a week off the Falcons had some rust showing as they came out slow against the Yellowjackets . They came out so slow offensively it took them six minutes of the period to score their first basket. In fact, they only scored 2 points in the entire quarter. They were 1 for 7 from the field in the period. The refs did not appear to be so rusty though as they called 5 fouls against the Falcons early before a foul was called on Alvin. Defensively Clear Lake looked solid. Led by Nandi Wijay, the Falcons secret weapon, the Falcons were able to hold the Jackets in check by allowing only 6 points in the first quarter. Nandi seems to have an invisible turbocharger strapped to his back that engages from time to time. He was all over the court usually being at the right place at the right time. What a difference he made in the first half of the ball game!! What a difference he made anytime he was in the ball game! When Nandi goes into turbodrive as he did from the opening tipoff, he is just a blur that mere mortals have trouble coping with. “Wait, how did he get over there? He was just over here a second ago?” Nandi’s 5 steals for the game seemed like 12. He was everywhere. In the second quarter the lead changed hands 3 times before the Falcons bested the Jackets 22-19 at halftime. 2 points first quarter, 20 points second quarter, hmmm. What’s going on here? In the third quarter the lead seesawed back and forth 3 times and the Jackets ended up by 1, 29-28. Solid play from #44, Jason Kinkaid and #21, Casey Jones kept Alvin in the hunt. By this time it is apparent that former Clear Lake coach, now Alvin head coach, Eric Aaron, is doing something mighty right. This should not have been a close game but everyone knew it would be. In the fourth quarter the lead also changed hands three times. With 2:41 remaining, Alvin’s Jason Kincaid fouled out. At 2:07 a steal and a layup by Connor Atchley, who played excellent defensively the entire game, brought the score to 36-35 in Lake’s favor. Two clutch free throws by Turbo (Nandi Wijay) brought it to 38-35 with 1:30 left on the clock. With 10 seconds remaining, Alvin’s Casey Jones hit a 3 from downtown to tie the game. With 6.39 seconds to go, Lake was unable to break the tie and the game went into overtime. In the overtime, neither team scored until Dennis Cerny calmly hit a 3 with 2:08 remaining. Alvin responded by hitting two free throws. 41-40 Lake. Cerny hit the second of two free throws at the 44 second mark and Scott Oswald did likewise at the 14 second mark to make it 43-40 Lake. Several very strategic, very smart timeouts were called along the way by the Alvin coach as you might imagine. On the last play of the game Alvin brought the ball down and scored partly because the Falcons knew they could allow a 2 point shot and they must not foul. With .29 seconds remaining and before the Falcons could inbound the ball, the referee blows the whistle and stops play indicating a time out for Alvin only Alvin didn’t call timeout. After some discussion Clear Lake was allowed to inbound the ball and the clock expired. Two officiating mistakes were made here to pile on top of some others earlier. First, the ref should not have signaled time out. Honest mistake, fortunately no harm done. Second, in high school basketball today, the rules say that if there is .3 seconds or less showing on the clock (once the clock is stopped, legally or otherwise), the period is over because studies have shown it is impossible to get a shot off in .3 seconds or less. In this case, not one, not two, but three officials missed this call. It is mistakes like this coupled with a lethargic timekeeper slow on the trigger that can cheat a team out of a win. Anyway, Lake won in a thrilling contest that went down to the wire. Alvin is going to surprise some folks before district play is over. Let’s hope it won’t be the Falcons when they meet again on February 6. Clear Lake averages 68.8 points per ball game and was held to 43 in this game. Scoring for the Falcons: Cerny 10, Wijay 9, Atchley 8, Greenwood 8, Oswald 3, Abner 3, Mitchell 2. The Falcons were 12 of 32 on 2 point attempts; 1 of 6 on 3’s, but they were 16 of 21 on free throws (37% of the Falcons points were scored at the charity stripe). See why it is important to practice and practice and practice those free throws.
THE OPINIONS EXPRESSED HERE DO NOT HAVE THE APPROVAL OF THE SCHOOL'S ADMINISTRATION OR THE COACHING STAFF. The smell coming from the Clear Lake gym tonight when Baytown Sterling (5-13) met the Clear Lake Falcons (17-6) was not the Sterling Rangers. The Rangers had a fire in their belly because they wanted badly to beat the Falcons. They really wanted it. Nor was the smell coming from the Falcon team. They played well enough to outclass the Rangers and the game was decided in the last four minutes of the second quarter. The smell was coming from the officials. One senior official and two junior ones combined to poorly officiate another 5A contest. Being a basketball official is a very difficult job but this is getting tiresome. What can you do? How can we remind these officials to try harder? Must we remind them at every game that these players are working too hard to be robbed by casual, anticipatory calls replete with guesses rather than what they saw? Fortunately, this was one game where having officiating which is not up to par can be afforded. All we can hope for is the quality of the officiating will improve once district play starts next week. Not likely, but we can still hope. Anyway, the game started out as expected, sorta. Lake took an early lead but someone forgot to tell the gamey Rangers that they were suppose to lose. With 3 minutes remaining in the first quarter, Baytown gained the lead 10-8. From there the lead changed hands two more times in the quarter. With 1:30 remaining in the first, the foul count went from 7-1 to Lake 8, Baytown 4. At the end of the first period, the score was Baytown 17, Clear Lake 14. The second quarter started out the same way. The lead changed hands three times in the first three minutes. Then Lake pulled ahead 24-22 and then really went to work. The Falcons held the Rangers scoreless for the remainder of the quarter. Clear Lake outscored the Rangers 28 to 5 in the quarter to put the score at 42-22 at halftime. It was 62-39 after 3 and the final score was 87-59. The Falcons were merciful or it might have been much more lopsided. The game was sprinkled with many questionable foul calls or no-calls but at least the officials did not determine the outcome of the game. Clear Lake got excellent play from everyone and everyone scored. Chris Mitchell went 6 for 6 for a team high 14 points. Connor Atchley had 12 points and 12 rebounds. Gordon Abner went 5 of 6 for 12 points. Armie Lewis had 10 points, Nandi Wijay had 9, and Dennis Cerny had 7 points. Aaron Greenwood had 7 points, 12 rebounds, 3 steals, and 3 blocked shots. Wow! Dan Rieke had 6 and Scott Oswald and Micah Walker each had 4 points. With five minutes remaining in the game, Ross Mahler, mostly recovered from a hip pointer, came in and scored 2.