Clear Springs team more than big three

Janay Redic knows the scouting report on the Clear Springs High School girls’ varsity basketball team is clearly a misrepresentation.

The perception is the success of the state-ranked Lady Chargers revolves around the talented trio of Dymond Gladney, Tasharian Robinson and Sierra Cheatham.

A second misnomer is that Clear Springs always pushes the pedal to the medal in an attempt to disrupt the opposition with tenacious end-to-end defense.

Redic, a senior two-year starter in the post, says a closer inspection of her team will reveal its true nature. “Those three give a lot to the team,” she insists. “They always go all out every single game.

“Whenever the rest of us put in 110 percent, we’re a completely different team,” Redic said. “We go from whatever they put in to an entire team scoring and getting on the boards.”

In a regional quarterfinal showdown with Pearland at Dawson High School, Clear Springs led 14-7 to start the second quarter when momentum suddenly swung to the upstart Lady Oilers.

Led by freshman sensation DeYona Gaston, Pearland reeled off 14 unanswered points to lead 21-14 midway through the second period. Redic ended the Clear Springs drought with an inside basket and the first half drew to a close in a 23-23 stalemate.

“When you play at this level you have to adjust to the situation,” said Clear Springs head coach Pam Crawford. “Even though our game-plan is to play hard baseline-to-baseline, there was a point in the game where Pearland got the momentum and we needed to slow it down.

“Our adrenaline was going and we wanted to play great,” Crawford said. “But it wasn’t happening and we had to regroup. That’s what we did.”

Robinson converted a three-point play at the outset of the third quarter to give Clear Springs a lead (26-23) it never surrendered. Robinson finished with a team-high 13 points.

Redic had 11 points, including a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter that put the Lady Chargers up 49-39. Gladney and Cheatham chipped in with 10 points apiece. Audrey Wandji (eight points) and Taylor Singleton (seven points, three blocked shots) had crucial roles in the win.

“Singleton crashed the boards for me tonight and Redic hit some shots that got us over the hump,” Crawford said. “The bench played well tonight. I didn’t go that far down (the bench) but I can go two or three more.”

Redic said she merely simplified the moment.

“The biggest thing on my mind was that I wanted to have practice tomorrow,” she said. “I didn’t want to have to go to school with no practice. I didn’t want my high school season to be over so I had to play the hardest I’ve ever played.

“We had a little letdown in the second quarter, but once we realized what we had to change, we were able to hype it back up and get our defense back,” Redic said.

Clear Springs (32-4) fell in the regional final to Cypress Ranch.