Category: Wall Hawks

FEATURE: Wall’s Tate Williams set tone for final track season with record day

Wall senior Tate Williams had been eyeing the school record in the shot put since his freshman year. So when the time finally came earlier this spring, he didn’t just break the 52-year-old mark, he surpassed it three times in one day.

The record-setting day came Feb. 25 in a dual meet with Christoval. Just out of basketball season, Williams had practiced throwing the shot put for only two days before breaking the school record of 55 feet, 1¼ inches set in 1969 by Glen Dierschke.

Williams’ second throw of the day was 55-1½, surpassing Dierschke’s record by one-fourth of an inch. Williams’ third throw was 55-6½, improving his brand new school record. His fourth throw was 57-8½, establishing a new Wall record by more than 2 feet.

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Evan Ren’s 2021 Gym Rat Team: The toughest, hardest-working teammates in the Big Country

While scoring and rebounding garner much of the attention in basketball, there are other elements, crucial to success, that seldom grab headlines. 

Behind the scenes is where character, effort and sacrifice set the foundation for teams to reach their full potential. And it is with our Big Country Preps Gym Rat Team that we salute the individuals who bring these elements to the table. 

This team isn’t about who the best players are — though some of the area’s top players are on this list. 

The Gym Rat Team is about outworking, outhustling and outgiving everyone around you, both on the floor and off. Hard-working, honest, selfless, tough, coachable kids are what we seek for this roster. 

A Gym Rat Team member can be your best player or the last player off the bench. But the one thing all of them bring is an uncompromisingly good attitude. 

It is for that reason that our Gym Rat Team is selected entirely by area coaches. And Big Country Preps is truly honored to present these individuals to you — the best “team players” (boys and girls) that the area had to offer during the 2020-21 season.

Players are listed in no particular order. 


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GAME STORY: Dublin boys stun Wall at buzzer, advances to I-3A quarterfinals

BROWNWOOD — Through the first two rounds of the Class 3A postseason, the Dublin Lions have had more thrilling moments than some teams experience in an entire season.

After edging Holliday 85-82 in overtime in the bi-district round, the Lions rallied in the fourth quarter for a 57-56 win over Wall on Wednesday night in a Region I-3A area round matchup at the Brownwood Coliseum.

Senior Daniel Escobar took an inbounds pass from midcourt and, after a Wall defender jumped too soon trying to contest the shot, hit a jumper from just a couple of feet to send the Lions faithful into a frenzy.

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GAME STORY: Wall takes pair of 6-3A nailbiters against Ballinger

BALLINGER — The Wall Hawks used a strong fourth quarter to fend off a Ballinger comeback attempt and claim a 49-35 District 6-3A win Friday night at Joe Forester Gymnasium.

With both squads having already clinched playoff berths, the Hawks put themselves in position to claim the outright district championship with a win over San Angelo TLCA on Tuesday.

The Bearcats, meanwhile, suffered their first home loss of the season after posting their lowest scoring game of the season.

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SIGNING DAY: Eastland’s Morton headlines this year’s Big Country recruiting crop

With National signing Day officially in the books, it’s time to take a quick look at this year’s Big Country signees — the most notable of which is Eastland quarterback Behren Morton, who has inked a Letter of Intent with Texas Tech. 

Wall offensive lineman Tate Williams (Baylor) and Cash Jones of Brock (Georgia) were the area’s only other players to sign with power conferences.

Angelo State was among the busiest of the area’s bigger universities, snagging Tyler Simpson of Blanket, Logan Glover of San Saba and Kason Phillips of Stephenville. 

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GAME STORY: Two fast starts for Wall, two Jim Ned rallies produce split doubleheader in Tuscola

TUSCOLA — A high-profile Friday doubleheader saw Jim Ned suffer two straight slow starts against Wall at Bill Thornton arena. The Jim Ned girls overcame theirs, topping their area rival 52-36. 

The boys weren’t so fortunate, falling to the Hawks 55-50, despite a frantic effort to erase an early deficit that had ballooned to 16 points by the second quarter.

On the girls side, Ashton Garner, Alexis Espinosa and Ashlynn Galvin dropped in 15, 14 and 13 points respectively to lift the 15th-ranked Lady Indians (21-2, 11-1). The win forces a first-place tie in District 6-3A with No. 14 Wall (20-3, 11-1), which suffered its first district loss of the year. 

Trailing 17-8 at the end of the first quarter and 21-13 with 4:46 left in the second, the Lady Indians closed the half on a 14-0 run and never relinquished the lead beyond that point. 

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BIG COUNTRY PREPS 2020 MAX EFFORT TEAM: The hardest-working volleyball players in the Big Country

Our All-Big Country Preps Volleyball team, released today, is in place to honor those who achieved the most on-court success in 2020. It is off the court, however, where character, grit and work ethic are often measured. And it is with our Big Country Preps Max Effort Team that we wish to honor those players who were the hardest-working, best teammates in the area this fall. 

This team isn’t about who the best volleyball players were.

The Max Effort team honors hustle, discipline, toughness, coachability and selflessness — traits that coaches wish every player had.

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Evan Ren’s 2020 True Grit Team: The toughest, hardest-working players in the Big Country!

Most of us know a football player who lives in the weight room, who’s always dependable and who always does what his coaches ask him. He always puts the team first. He’s early to arrive and late to leave. And he seldom needs direction because he always pays attention. 

You know the type. But you seldom hear about them, since there is no specific category to put them in and the media doesn’t recognize these qualities.

This is the guy who always sets a good example. He doesn’t complain and above all else, is tough mentally and physically. He’s not necessarily the best player on his team (though some are). But he’s definitely the guy who gets the most out of whatever talent he was born with.

Welcome to the 2020 “True Grit” team — the one place in the Big Country where guys who fall into this category are recognized for it.

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