Summer Creek women’s basketball program is fresh off of a very successful season. Now, they make the big jump from 4A to 6A and the competition is going to be tough but head coach Angie McDonald is confident her team will compete at the highest level.
Most coaches know how their teams will be aligned even before the season begins, pending a move in from another school. The Lady Bulldogs had a pleasant surprise when freshman point guard, Damaya Telemaque, not only made the varsity squad, but also has been the starting point guard since day 1 of the season and has excelled at the position. “She’s proved that she is most definitely capable of hanging at the varsity level,” Coach McDonald said. Another freshman, Anota Adekunle, was the other surprise. She was playing varsity volleyball for Summer Creek before she came out to basketball. “She’s an amazing athlete, very coachable,” Coach McDonald said. She also mentioned that she would not move up a freshman unless they are going to play. The only other time she did this was when current senior Jayla Calhoun was moved up her freshman year.
The Lady Bulldogs competed in the Conroe tournament earlier in the season and came away as the champions. It was the 3rd time they had competed in the tournament and the previous two times they received the consolation trophy. They defeated Klein Collins in the championship game, 62-52.
Last season in District 19-4A the Lady Bulldogs went an astounding 15-1-en route to a district championship. This season, in the new 16-6A, the expectation they have for themselves is to capture one of the playoff spots. They know they are new to 6A ball so winning a district title is not something they expect in their first year but they certainly haven’t ruled it out either. Summer Creek has seen the difference thus far winning games handily in 4A to having to fight for every point in 6A. So far in district they’ve lost two close games to The Woodlands, 54-53, and fell to Oak Ridge in overtime, 62-56. They managed to get the better of a close game against Kingwood, 60-59.
After defeating Beaumont Central, 72-62, in the first round of the UIL playoffs last season they were hit hard by Brenham the next round falling, 71-59, and eliminating them from playoffs thus ending their season. Although they took solace in defeating Beaumont Central after losing to them the previous year, 39-38, in the first round of the playoffs, it never gets any easier knowing that there is no tomorrow.
Returning for her final season is Jayla Calhoun, last year’s District 19-4A Most Valuable Player. “This year she’s playing out of her mind,” Coach McDonald stated. Having averaged about 24-points per game and hitting 30 or more points in over 3 games, she has indeed been playing at a high level. Sha’donnaver “Sugar” Young is also a senior making an impact. A three year letterman, Sug’ has been right up there with Calhoun contributing on both ends of the floor. “As far as experience and go-to-girls, it is definitely them,” Coach McDonald remarked, “I always tell them we’re going to be as good as you lead us and they’ve definitely done an excellent job with that.” Along with Sydney Thompson and Kayla Fisher, Coach McDonald says the seniors expectations are nothing less than making the playoffs. “Role players matter. It takes a team to win,” Young said, “We need defense, we need to play together, and as a leader, I’ll do whatever they need me to.” Calhoun wants the team to come out to the court with the mentality that they are going to dominate. “I want us to eliminate the small things. I feel like if we accomplish that by playoffs we can win more playoff games,” Calhoun said.
The women’s basketball program is involved with the school in a program for feeding the hungry in which the Administration at SCHS and Humble ISD had identified certain students that are in need of the basic fundamentals of food. The girls all donated. During Christmas each team in the basketball program adopted 2 of these students, made a Christmas list of what they needed and wanted, and gave them a Christmas they never would have had. “Instead of giving gifts to each other, we all decided we wanted to give back,” Coach McDonald said.
Angie McDonald was at Cy Falls HS for 10 years before arriving at SCHS. The men’s coach there, Jim Drought, was a great mentor for her. “He was a great example of a coach on and off the court,” she admitted. She was an assistant to current Cy Fair Athletic Director, Sharon Fera, whom was another big influence on her career. Coach McDonald attended Cy Creek High School where she played basketball. She then went on to play at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX.
Written by Mark M. Johnson