By LARRY GAGE
Special to the PRESS
Port Isabel High sophomore Mandy Perkins is starting her second season on the Varsity basketball team. This week she talked with the Press about how she is is more comfortable with the experience the second time around.
“My first year on Varsity I was a little nervous around everyone else, and this year I’m more comfortable. I know every-body better.”
Perkins kept active in the game over the summer and described how she became a better player in the off-season.
“I learned a lot of skills and techniques over the summer and I was able to add them to my game.”
One of the most important skills in the game is, obviously, shooting.
“My shooting has improved a lot – before I couldn’t really make anything. I’m more of an inside shooter, layups. And I don’t really think I have a best shot. I think I just find an open spot and, if it’s a good shot, I’ll take it.”
“I can drive (to the basket) but I’m a post player so I’m mostly on the bottom. Sometimes I pop out to the side and shoot the three.”
DeMoss recognizes Perkins’ value to the team.
“Mandy has a lot of energy, especially on defense. We’re trying to get her to process the game a little slower, because she plays as fast as she can. She’s probably one of the fastest girls on the team and she plays like it. She’s learning to play and she’s getting better every day.”
Perkins family has not produced a long line of athletes but; “My mom was a cheerleader and my dad played football in Nederland, in East Texas.”
Among the courses Perkins is taking this fall semester are Chemistry, Geometry, World History, and English II. She says her grades are good; “I’m getting a 94 in geometry.”
In her spare time, Perkins reads a little fiction here and there. “I used to be a big bookworm, when I was little, and I still come around to books from time to time.” She admits to being a Harry Potter fan, seeing all the movies as well as read the books.
The team is bonding well and improving its game, according to Perkins.
“We’re really close and that’s a good thing.”
Perkins was asked about how the team has been picking up the new offense as set out by first-year head coach DeMoss.
“We were having a little bit of trouble learning the new plays and now everyone’s coming along.”
So, does that mean that a good player/coach relationship has developed?
“He’s a very good coach,” Perkins said of Coach DeMoss. “He’s really understanding. If we’re not (picking up) the play he’ll go over it a couple more times. He just keeps us on our feet most of the time.”
The Lady Tarpons will be playing at Monte Alto this Friday. That’s a late addition to the schedule, which was only arranged after the schedule went to print. Two more games remain to be played before the start of district season in less than two weeks, both at home; Brownsville Pace next Tuesday, the 10th, and St. Joseph’s on Friday, the 13th.
Zapata will visit Tarpon Gym for the first district game on Tuesday, December 17.