Torenzo Saunders may only be a junior and in his second season on the varsity level, but he understands how important preparation is to helping the Shoemaker Grey Wolves win.
He averaged 19 points in wins over Temple and Copperas Cove to keep the Grey Wolves one game behind District 8-5A leader Harker Heights.
For his efforts, Saunders was named the KDHPressbox.com Player of the Week.
Saunders, who plays post, finished with 534 votes and has helped the Grey Wolves win six straight games since the team dropped their first two district contests.
Saunders was 8 for 8 from the field and 5 of 6 from the free throw line against Cove.
“We knew from the beginning of district that those two losses weren’t how we should have played,” Saunders said. “We just had to come together as a team and I had to step up somehow. Whether it was getting boards, scoring or playing good defense, I did whatever we needed to win.”
Cove senior post Bryaunea Hall was the runner-up to Saunders with 511 votes. Hall was nominated after averaging 17 points, including putting up 23 against Shoemaker, to help the Lady Bulldawgs climb into fifth place in district after winning three straight games.
Ellison junior Jordanna Porter finished third with 258 votes after averaging 18.5 points per game in wins over Waco Midway and Belton to help the Lady Eagles remain perfect in district play. The Lady Eagles clinched at least a share of the district title after 10 district games.
Heights senior post Josh DeLaney finished fourth with 28 votes after averaging 14.5 points per game in wins over Belton and Killeen. DeLaney hit five 3-pointers against the Roos to help the Knights stay one game ahead of Shoemaker for first place in the district.
Shoemaker head coach Emund Prichett said that the seeds for Saunders’ breakout season were planted after his sophomore season.
“He’s put in a lot of work in the weight room,” Prichett said. “Just doing individual stuff, trying to get better and become a better post player. His teammates have helped him out tremendously. It’s an individual award, but I know he feels the same way in that he wants to give it back to his team.”
Shoemaker opened the district portion of its schedule with losses to Killeen and Heights, but avenged the loss to the Roos on Monday with a 60-49 home win.
The Grey Wolves look to get another home district win tonight when they host the Knights and, more importantly, try to force a tie for first place.
“We’re going to take it like another game, we’re in second and they’re in first,” Saunders said. “It’s probably going to be one of the best games of the year.”