By Bruce Campbell, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
Pioneer’s Brandon Gallagher is ready to do double duty when his Pioneer girls and boys host Oklahoma Bible Academy tonight in the Mustangs’ delayed season opener.
The girls tip off at 6:30 p.m., followed by the boys at 8.
Gallagher, the longtime PHS boys coach, added the girls duties this summer.
“It’s hard to tell where we are because you never know until you get out in game situations,’’ Gallagher said. “Every year is a new year, but practices have been going well.’’
Practices have not been a problem for Gallagher, although both teams work out at the same time. Longtime assistant David Norton “runs half the practices,’’ assisted by Erik Robinson and Garrett Bebermeyer.
“It’s all the other stuff ... the laundry, uniform check out, doing the rankings, newspaper stuff ... that’s where the big difference is,’’ Gallagher said. “We’re just ready to play. We have been practicing for a long time.’’
Pioneer’s original opener with Crescent Friday was postponed because of weather conditions.
“There’s nothing you can do about the weather,’’ Gallagher said. “You just have to get ready to play.’’
OBA’s girls are 2-1 after a 62-52 win over Crossings Christian Dec. 3. The boys are 3-0. Adam Eaton is averaging 21.3 points per game.
“You always feel a little uneasy if somebody has played a game and you haven’t,’’ Gallagher said. “I’ve had some teams that hasn’t bothered and I’ve had some teams that used that as an excuse. You can’t use that as an excuse. Hopefully, we’ll play well right off the bat.’’
Pioneer’s boys return three starters from a 14-13 team, including 6-foot-9 junior forward Colby Koontz, who averaged 15 points and 9.2 rebounds as a junior. Blake Gabriel, a 6-5 senior averaged 14.6 and 6.4, while 6-1 junior guard Brandon McNaughton averaged 7.5 and 2.7.
“We should be improved,’’ Gallagher said. “If we stay healthy, we should be able to compete with about anyone.’’
Others to watch are 5-6 junior Sage Lamunyon, 5-11 sophomore Cole Hammock, 6-2 sophomore Stephen Rich, 6-0 senior Patrick Williams and 6-4 junior Austin Rogers.
The Lady Mustangs return four starters from an 8-16 team — 6-0 sophomore center Bayli Koontz, 5-7 junior guard Carli Woolsey, 6-1 senior forward Lexi Mann and 5-3 senior guard Hope Yerian.
Others to watch are 5-10 sophomore Andi Simunek, 5-9 sophomore Courtney Vaughn, 5-7 junior Jessica Johnson, 5-5 sophomore Haley Roney, 5-2 sophomore Katelyn Stone, 5-7 junior Kylee McVey and 5-7 freshman Rylie Schneider.
“We’re hoping to improve,’’ Gallagher said. “We just hope both teams can improve as we go along. We’ll see what happens at the end of the season.’’
Pioneer will get caught up in a hurry. They play at the OBA Prep Classic, which tips off Thursday.
“That’s where you begin to notice it (fatigue),’’ Gallagher said. “Your legs get a little dead about the third game. There’s nothing you can do about that. You just have to go play.’’