Burnet ends Brady’s season, players prepare for next year

The 2001-02 basketball season for the Brady Bulldogs ended in another disappointing loss in Burnet Tuesday night when the home team scored a 82-44 win. The Doggies’ loss completed the season with a district record of 1-7 and 8-18 overall. Brady coach Shawn Dalbert, although lamenting the number of losses, said Wednesday that his squad is improved over the previous year. “The kids fought hard and never backed down from an opponent the entire time. We are still young, but I look for us to be vastly better next year,” he said. Many of the games that the Bulldogs lost were close to the end, including about seven or eight games that were narrow victories for their opponents. “We very easily could have finished the district with a winning record,” Dalbert observed. He said, “The season was a long one, but it was a productive one. We did a lot of good things.” Dalbert attributed many of the close losses to turnovers by young players and mental errors that led to personal and techical fouls. “I firmly believe we could be heading for the playoffs now with a 16-10 record. It just didn’t happen,” he said. The nucleus of the team will be back next season, including two of the top scorers’C.J. Villegas and Cole Whisenhunt, who are both sophomores this season and are both guards. Hunter Wilkinson is the only senior starter who will be lost to graduation. “Size will continue to be a factor next season,” Dalbert said. “Blake Andrews, who will be a senior, is 6-5, and Chris Airheart, who will be a junior is about 6-3.” The coach said his team next year will be much more experienced, and “we’ll be better prepared.” All Brady athletes began a rigid off-season program which is designed to make them better’bigger, stronger and faster. “I believe we are definitely moving in the right direction,” Dalbert said. Against Burnet, the Brady team was never really in the ball game. The Bulldogs trailed the other Bulldogs by 10, 19-9, after the first period and were down by 15, 39-24, at intermission. Brady was behind by 20 after three quarters, but Burnet blew the Dogs away in the fourth period, outscoring them 26-8. “We played a lot of junior varsity players in our final varsity game, and a couple of them, Ben Cruz and Carter McBee, did a really fine job,” the Brady mentor said. Dalbert took a deep breath and said he was really looking forward to the next season in Brady. Score by quarters: Brady 9 15 12 8’44 Burnet 19 20 17 26’82 Brady scorers: C.J. Villegas 6, Cole Whisenhunt 11, Clifton Tally 6, Hunter Wilkinson 2, Luke Price 3, Carter McBee 7, Ben Cruz 9.

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