Shoemaker's Tija Hawkins (23) and Makayla Gatewood (10) reach for a rebound against Copperas Cove on Tuesday night at Shoemaker.

Shoemaker 6-foot-2 senior forward Tija Hawkins earned the Player of the Week award.

Hawkins scored 10 of her team-high 14 points in the fourth quarter, leading the Lady Wolves to a 37-35 win over Belton in last week’s District 12-6A opener.

“They were playing us in zone and so we were feeding the ball to Tija in the middle,” Shoemaker head coach Michelle O’Neal said. “Plus, Tija was scoring off of offensive rebounds — that’s her thing. Belton was playing good defense. Nothing against Belton; Tija just got hot, everything she threw up was dropping. It was an amazing quarter.”

Others nominated for the honor were CJ Giddens, of Florence, Lometa’s Ivan Jasso, and Killeen’s Cierra Penn.

“I’m really proud of Tija for winning this award this week,” O’Neal said. “It’s nice to see her stepping up now in her senior year and really getting after it. Her teammates are helping to get her involved; they’re getting a lot of assists now.”

Shoemaker is 10-3 overall this season, 2-0 in District 12-6A action.

“Tija is a big key to our success,” O’Neal said. “I think she has been a lot more focused this year. In the preseason tournaments, it took her awhile to turn it up. Now that district play has started, she is really picking it up.

“She’s getting a bunch of assists of her own, too. When she’s getting doubled — and they send two at her a lot — she’s looking to pass and feed her teammates. This award is really good for her and our whole team.”

Contact Allan Mandell at or 254-501-7566 and read his column at

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.