Shoemaker at Ellison Boys Basketball

Shoemaker's Nasir Kirk, left, drives down the court against Ellison's Chandler Sutton on Friday at Ellison High School.

It did not sit well with the Grey Wolves.

Last week, Shoemaker trailed Ellison most of the game before senior Ta’veon Sevaaetasi’s 3-pointer tied the score with 12 second remaining in regulation.

Despite Sevaaetasi and Houston-commit J’Wan Roberts each posting 20 points in the game, the Grey Wolves could not keep up with Ellison’s Amir Davis and Chandler Sutton in overtime, and Shoemaker fell 70-60.

With their first District 12-6A loss, the Grey Wolves dropped from No. 15 to No. 17 in the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches poll. Additionally, Ellison jumped to No. 16 in the rankings.

“That was a hard loss that we took,” Sevaaetasi said. “We have to see them again eventually when we play them at home, but we’re not worried about that yet.

“That’s all behind us, and we’re just focused on getting to the playoffs and being first in district.”

The Grey Wolves hosted Waco on Tuesday, and Sevaaetasi said the team entered the game knowing the importance of winning.

“We needed this win, because now we’re fighting for first place in district,” he said. “We’re just trying to work our way back up to the top.”

Shoemaker head coach Brandon Gilbert also knew how vital the 63-42 win against the Lions was for his team.

“We were in a situation where we needed to get some guys some confidence,” Gilbert said. “I thought we didn’t shoot the ball well in against Ellison, and I thought we shot the ball well against Waco.

“We got the ball in the hands of the right players, but most importantly, our defense was our offense, so we looked pretty good.”

Getting back in the win column helps refocus the Grey Wolves, but Roberts will not forget the sting from the overtime loss soon.

“From this day on, we’re going to take all the energy from that Friday and beat every team the way that we want to,” Roberts said.

With a chip on their shoulders, according to Sevaaetasi, the Wolves came out swinging against the Lions as senior Romeo Postell scored five seconds after the tipoff.

Postell’s shot sparked Shoemaker as Nasir Kirk connected from the outside, Jalen Childs added six points, and Roberts led the pack with nine points, including two first-quarter dunks that excited the crowd.

“It motivates us to work harder,” said Roberts of the crowd. “The fans are awesome, they show love all the time, and when they cheer for us, it just gives us motivation to keep pushing harder.”

With the bleachers full, the Grey Wolves put on a show and held a 27-13 lead over Waco after the first quarter.

“Our defense is going to lead our offense,” Sevaaetasi said. “That’s where it comes from, and so we’ll have to continue to work on that and boxing out.”

The Grey Wolves face No. 14 Waco Midway tonight in their final game before the holiday break.

“We have to focus on the details, execution and following the game plan,” Gilbert said. “We have to know who can do what on the opposing team.

“We have little lapses on the defensive end sometimes, and we don’t always communicate the way we should, but other than that, I think we’ll be fine as far as the simple things.”

The Panthers (13-4, 3-0) are undefeated in district, but the Grey Wolves aim to change that, and Roberts believes his team has what it takes to make it happen.

“We just have to stay focused and being able to knock down shots,” he said, “because I know going into the game I’m going to be double teamed a lot.

“I’m going to need somebody I can kick the ball out to who can knock down shots to get us rolling, because we need to win this game on the road.”

Shoemaker will face Copperas Cove and Harker Heights when district play resumes Jan. 2.

“We’re ready, we’re prepared and we practice hard every day,” Sevaaetasi said. “We know what we’re capable of doing.

“We’re prepared for whatever comes our way.” | 254-501-7562

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