Brown pro­vides op­ti­mism for Wheat­ley

Star ju­nior av­er­ag­ing 35.4 points for squad eye­ing re­turn to state

Houston Chronicle - - HIGH SCHOOLS | WINTER SPORTS - By Adam Cole­man adam.cole­[email protected] twit­­cole­man

As soon as Tel­isha Brown sank her 14th 3-pointer that Jan­uary night against Scar­bor­ough, Wheat­ley coach De­dreck Carr peeked at the na­tional record book.

Brown had tal­lied 56 points on 21-of-27 shoot­ing (78 per­cent), five re­bounds, five as­sists and seven steals.

The only thing stand­ing be­tween those 14 3-point­ers just be­ing part of her lore and their be­ing set in stone for all to see is the Na­tional Fed­er­a­tion of State High School As­so­ci­a­tions.

Ac­cord­ing to the NFHS book, Brown’s 14 3-point­ers would be the most from any­one in Texas in a girls bas­ket­ball game. The to­tal, achieved by six other girls, ranks third all-time na­tion­ally. The record is 17.

The process for get­ting a record per­for­mance in­cluded in the na­tional book may not be known far and wide. The NFHS de­tails it on its web­site, stat­ing it has to be ap­proved by the state as­so­ci­a­tion first — the Uni­ver­sity In­ter­scholas­tic League in this case. The UIL then sends it to the NFHS to clear.

Carr has proper doc­u­men­ta­tion and proof, in­clud­ing a pic­ture of the stat book that night. The rest just takes pa­tience.

“Then they take over from there,” Carr said. “I don’t know what the process is af­ter that.”

At the very least, it’s indica­tive of the kind of sea­son Brown is hav­ing. With 884 to­tal points this sea­son, she’s av­er­ag­ing 35.4 per game head­ing into the post­sea­son this week.

It’s mostly out of ne­ces­sity. Wheat­ley was one of Hous­ton’s dar­lings last post­sea­son, mak­ing it to the Class 4A state semi­fi­nals. It was a nice mo­ment for Hous­ton ISD, which has seen only one girls bas­ket­ball state cham­pion (Yates in 1983).

Last year’s Wheat­ley team had 12 se­niors. This one is spurred by a ju­nior who’s eclipsed 2,100 ca­reer points and is dou­ble- and tripleteamed for 47 feet on most nights.

Such is life in the mid­dle of a youth move­ment.

“Her body is a lit­tle beat up and just fa­tigued right about this mo­ment,” Carr said. “That’s been the rough part of it.”

But Carr said Brown al­ways “an­swers the bell.”

Wheat­ley opens the play­offs against Bra­zosport on Tues­day. How Brown puts a cap on what could go down as one of the all­time best scor­ing cam­paigns in the area will be in­ter­est­ing.

Trot­ter, Crosby make it back

Michelle Trot­ter is prob­a­bly sa­vor­ing this play­off ap­pear­ance a lit­tle more than oth­ers.

Like other dis­trict em­ploy­ees, the Crosby coach was in line to be laid off fol­low­ing Crosby ISD’s bud­get cri­sis. She was also the so­cial stud­ies cur­ricu­lum co­or­di­na­tor.

She’d coached only half the sea­son be­fore the De­cem­ber lay­offs, but by then a so­cial stud­ies teacher in the dis­trict re­signed, and Trot­ter was of­fered the po­si­tion and able to stay around.

She has Crosby in the play­offs for the fourth time in five years.

The first-round op­po­nent? It’s a fierce ri­val in Bar­bers Hill, al­beit a dif­fer­ent-look Bar­bers Hill team with all-world Charli Col­lier hav­ing grad­u­ated last year.

A lot of girls bas­ket­ball suc­cess flows be­tween these two pro­grams, mak­ing for an in­ter­est­ing first-round date.

Fab­u­lous Five

No team in Hous­ton has had to work harder than Madi­son.

The Mar­lins have only five play­ers on the ros­ter this sea­son but were per­fect in league play, go­ing 14-0 to win Dis­trict 23-5A. They have a fa­mil­iar “Fab Five” nick­name to go with their ac­com­plish­ment.

Madi­son will likely get no tougher draw than first-round foe Shadow Creek on Mon­day.

Other story lines

• Mor­ton Ranch made its way through a Katy ISD mini-tour­na­ment of sorts for the fi­nal play­off spot out of 19-6A. The Lady Mavs beat Tomp­kins and Cinco Ranch for a first-round meet­ing with Ridge Point. Both games went to over­time. The Cinco Ranch game took two over­time pe­ri­ods.

• Ridge Point will be led by guard Tay­lor Thomas, who re­cently reached 2,000 ca­reer points. An­other guard, Spring’s Kait­lyn Davis, just reached 1,000 points, and the Lady Lions are play­off­bound as Dis­trict 16-6A cham­pi­ons.

• As of Sun­day af­ter­noon, three Cy­press-Fair­banks ISD teams are in the Texas As­so­ci­a­tion of Bas­ket­ball Coaches Class 6A rank­ings: No. 4 Jersey Vil­lage, No. 12 Cy­press Ranch and No. 13 Cy­press Creek, a 2018 state semi­fi­nal­ist.

• Man­vel, Hightower and Fos­ter lead the way for Hous­ton in the Class 5A rank­ings, and each is a mem­ber of Dis­trict 24-5A.

• Beau­mont United is 34-0 and was state-ranked No. 14 as of Sun­day, rel­e­vant con­sid­er­ing the Tim­ber­wolves are in Re­gion III-6A.

• Alvin — led by sharp­shoot­ing An­dreea Man­cha — has back-to­back play­off ap­pear­ances for the first time since 2006-2007.

• Al­dine has a tough first-round game against Klein Collins but ex­tin­guished one of the longer play­off droughts at 15 years.

• Al­dine Davis opens the play­offs against Con­roe with­out lead­ing scorer Leeza De La Garza, who in­jured her an­te­rior cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment against West­field last week.

Ron­ald Cortes / Con­trib­u­tor

Wheat­ley’s Tel­isha Brown, right, has turned heads this sea­son with her scor­ing, in­clud­ing an out­ing with 14 3-point­ers that would qual­ify as a state record for a girls bas­ket­ball game.

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