Cy-Fair/Northwest Roundup: Draudt sees hard times coming
Jim Draudt is in his 18th season at Cy Falls and is well aware of the annual improvement in the district.
"It's really become competitive the last few years, and like last season, it just might come down to the very last games as far as who advances and who stays home," he said. "All of our district teams are well-coached, and that means they're all well-prepared for district, and you can really throw the records out no matter who is playing."
The Eagles were one of two 17-5A teams with a 4-0 district start this season (Langham Creek was the other), but Cy Lakes, Cy-Fair and Cy Springs got out of the gate at 3-1, and no one is out of the race with plenty of games to go.
"We started 0-3 last season, and then went 9-1, so this season, we really focused on getting off on a positive note," Draudt said. "We're pleased to be where we are, but there is a long way to go, and in this district, very few things are decided before all the games are in the books."
Cy Falls finished in a four-way tie for second place and fell to Langham Creek 53-49 in a district playoff last year.
"That's made our returning player even hungrier to get out of district this season," Draudt said. "We basically tied for second place and then didn't get to go to the playoffs, and that didn't set well with anyone."
The 4-0 start resulted from victories against Cy Ridge 60-49, Jersey Village 47-41, Cy Lakes 73-44 and Cy Creek 54-40 with the Eagles using a starting lineup of junior Mitchell Badillo (5-8 point guard), seniors Kerry Kang (5-10 guard), Matt Slade (6-3 forward) and Matt Hochstrasser (6-8 post), and sophomore Kavin Tilbury (6-5 post).
Top reserves in a nine-man regular rotation are seniors Kole Batiste (6-2 forward) and Joe Westerman (6-1 forward), and juniors Braden Spencer (6-5 post) and Trey Williams (5-11 guard).
"We did some mixing and matching during the early part of the season, but we've settled into our lineup in district," Draudt said.
The Eagles continue 17-5A action at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 21, at Cy Ridge, and at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 25, against Jersey Village at home.
Cy Ridge and Jersey Village both started 1-3 in district.
"Like I said, it doesn't matter what the records are because every team can win against anybody," Draudt said. "We're split into zones, and those singles games against the other zone are of course just as big, and that's something we're out to improve on this season.
"Nobody is out of the playoff race at this point, and a victory or two can get teams right back in it."
Draudt vs. Draudt
Cy Falls coach Jim Draudt has the unique pleasure of facing his son, Cy Woods coach Chris Draudt, during 17-5A play, and this season, the Draudt-directed teams meet once at 7 p.m. on Feb. 8 at Cy Falls.
"It's a lot of fun, even though they've got the better us of a few times," Jim Draudt said. "It's great to see him coaching and having had some success in our district, and we're going to see if we can get them down the road.
"(Cy Woods) is somewhat rebuilding after graduating several outstanding players over the past two seasons, and they've struggled a little bit, but they still have a shot."
Cy Woods had an 0-4 beginning in 17-5A, and that comes on the heals of back-to-back district titles (33-4 overall in 2008-09 and 22-8 in the Wildcats' third varsity campaign last year).
As for the father-son matchup, Chris leads his dad 6-2.
Katy I-10 Shootout
The Katy ISD I-10 Shootout runs Thursday through Saturday, Jan. 20-22, with 48 girls teams playing at the six Katy ISD high schools over the first two days, and all six bracket championship matches at Rhodes Stadium on Saturday, Jan. 22.
The massive affair, which also features numerous junior varsity squads competing in a separate division, is described as one of the largest and most prestigious tournaments in Texas on the event's Web site (www.i-10shootout.org).
District 17-5A (aka the Cy-Fair ISD) will be well represented in Thursday, Jan. 20, openers that feature Cy Ranch vs. Pope John XXIII at 2 p.m. at Katy High School; Cy-Fair vs. Memorial at 2 p.m. at Katy Taylor; Langham Creek vs. Clear Creek at 4 p.m. at Mayde Creek; Cy Lakes vs. Westside at 6 p.m. at Morton Ranch; Cy Creek vs. Klein Oak at 6 p.m. at Seven Lakes; and Cy Woods vs. Belton at 8 p.m. at Cinco Ranch.
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