Girls basketball: Collins' Odom welcomed by injury bug
After losing three players to injuries during the offseason fall league, new Klein Collins coach Kristi Odom is seriously considering not competing next year.
"As of right now, I doubt if we'll play," she said.
"The fall league has some benefits, but after what happened prior to this season, I don't think we will."
Would-be starter Lexis Gil, a senior guard who earned all-district honors last year, has been out the entire season due to a preseason injury, as has junior guard Taylor Glenn, and another senior guard, Cari Gelal, is just now coming back from a broken finger in the fall.
The Lady Tigers have also been without sophomore starting guard Dominique Dillingham after she sprained a knee against The Woodlands on Oct. 22, so the Klein Collins medical staff has passed out just about as many assists as the active players.
But despite all the injured Lady Tigers, including junior Ciara Dolan, Klein Collins was able to reach the Texas Invitational gold bracket finals during the early part of the season where they fell to Class 5A No. 1 Cy Falls.
It's one of two losses to the state's top-ranked team during a 7-6 start that also had Klein Collins falling to No. 17 Cy-Fair, The Woodlands, Class 4A No. 23 Barbers Hill and Cy Creek.
"We've had a very challenging schedule and the injuries, but the girls are not use to that (starting 7-6), and I'm not use to that," said Odom, who led Spring Branch Memorial to the playoffs the past two seasons. "We had some good wins early on over (5A No. 4) Irving MacArthur and (5A No. 15) North Crowley, and we're continuing to build on positives like that."
During a tournament outing at the Katy ISD Classic last week, the Lady Tigers used a starting lineup of juniors Veja Hamilton (5-9 guard) and Kayla Schlobohm (5-11 post), and seniors Ashley Adams (5-10 post), Lexus Harris (5-7 guard) and Tia Russell (5-7 guard).
Sophomore Kendall Festervand (5-8 guard) has also started, and freshmen Infiniti Harris (5-9 guard) and Sheina Duncan (5-7 guard) continued to take to the speed of the varsity game.
Hamilton is the only returning starter from last season's District 13-5A championship squad, and as a standout scorer and all-around player, she's being heavily recruited.
Adams pulled down 24 rebounds in one game, and had 13 in another this season, and coaches says Russell plays defense "like no other."
Odom may be new to the district, but she knows No. 16 Dekaney is definitely the favorite, and that Klein Forest and Klein Oak have looked good, along with Tomball, Westfield, Spring and Klein, and the 13-5A race will be a battle from start to finish.
"Dekaney is the most complete team in our district, and I've seen them play twice," she said, "and it appears that no game is a lock because everyone can win.
"We want to battle for a playoff berth, but more than that, we want to be No. 1 in 13-5A, and the girls are working hard to have a shot at it."
Klein Collins meets West Brook at 4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 9, at Clear Creek High School's Carlisle Field House in the opening round of the 53rd annual Peggy Whitley Classic. The Tigers then continue play at the event this Friday and Saturday, Dec. 10-11.
The Lady Wildcats jump right into the thick of the 13-5A scramble opening district at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14, at Dekaney.
They host Klein Forest at 7 p.m. on Dec. 17 in the district home opener.
Local Advertising by PaperG