Mustangs battle Indians

Anthony Zapata works a defender to keep the Mustangs in scoring position. Photo by Noah Gilkey.

The Mustangs are now 4-5 after facing Jourdanton on Friday night. Falling 50-38, the Mustangs nearly had the game with being just two points behind at the end of the third but the Indians went on a scoring run. This Friday, Natalia will face Cotulla at home and then play in Poth on Tuesday.
Starting for the Mustangs against Jourdanton was David Silva, David Rodriguez, Joshua San Miguel, Manuel Garcia, and Devin Chapa who scored the first two points for Natalia. Jourdanton used a half court press on the Mustangs, but Natalia could beat them to the basket. Missing their shots put the ball back into the Indians hands who took the lead and held on to it the rest of the quarter which ended 7-13 after a buzzer short from Jourdanton.
Natalia scored first in the second quarter when Garcia powered through the Indian’s defenders under the basket. A three-pointer from Chapa put the Mustangs within one of Jourdanton. Through most of the second quarter, both teams would not score until after four minutes passed and Joseph Gonzales drove in for a lay-up. Natalia quickly tied the game 15-15 when on an inbound play, Gonzales drove in again. Under a bad Indian pass and Gonzales took the ball to the basket to take the lead 19-17. In the last few seconds, Jourdanton tied the game and ended the half 19-19.
A three-pointer from Rodriguez put Natalia up after nearly two scoreless minutes in the third. The Indians then went on an 11-point run to take the lead 30-22. But Natalia was unshaken, and they added six quick points and were within two with just a minute left in the quarter and the quarter ended 28-30.
Moving the ball around and shaking up the Indian defense was key to Natalia again tying up the game. Jourdanton took a three-point lead but a foul sent Rodriguez to the line and his two free-throws again put Natalia within 1. A few questionable calls against Natalia and Jourdanton was able to grow their lead by 5. The Indians got hot and the game ended 38-50.
“I thought we did a really good job of coming out to play from the start. We were able to get into our offense early on and get to the basket a few times that resulted in some early points. Fell behind by about 8 halfway through the 3rd quarter but climbed back into it and tied the game at 30 in the early minutes of the 4th quarter. Unfortunately, we were not able to play very well down the stretch. Turnovers and forced shots were the difference in the 4th quarter as Jourdanton outscored us 20-10 in the final quarter. I thought our guys battled and never quit even when falling behind 8 in the 3rd quarter, but we have to be able to finish games down the stretch,” added Coach Justin Welsh.
Stats: Silva 2 rebounds, 3 steals. Chapa 3 points, 2 rebounds, 1 steal. Rodriguez 12 points, 1 rebound, 2 steals. San Miguel 9 points, 1 rebound, 3 steals. Gonzales 5 points, 5 rebounds, 2 steals. Matthew Martin 1 rebound. Garcia 9 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals.
Friday night against Poteet, the Mustangs pulled out a win at the very end. Tied at 19-19 at the half, the Mustangs fell slightly behind in the third but won the game by outshooting the Aggies in the fourth.
“Really proud of our guys for their fight on Friday night. Turnovers got the best of us in the early minutes of the 3rd quarter as we fell behind, but the guys continued to battle and found a way to get the job done as we picked up a 42-39 win over Poteet. Proud of our guys for the way they handled themselves down the stretch and came up with some big defensive stops to hang on for the win,” said Coach Welsh.
Stats: Silva 6 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist, 5 steals. Chapa 2 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals. Rodriguez 5 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist, 1 steal. San Miguel 21 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, 3 steals. Gonzales 5 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 3 steals. Martin 1 rebound. Garcia 2 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals.
By Dicy Chambers
Sports Writer