Who are these guys?

College Park Baseball Prepare for the 6A Playoffs

The Cavaliers are in the regional semi-finals for only the second time in school history Vype

Surprising run has Cavaliers in fourth round of 6A playoffs.

There’s a recurring theme in the movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” where the outlaws are being chased by a relentless posse of lawmen.

Butch and Sundance cannot shake the nameless, faceless group from their trail as they watch the burning torches from the horseback posse getting closer in the night sky.

At one point Butch asks Sundance “Who are these guys”?

The Houston baseball community is now asking the same question about the College Park Cavaliers.

“Who are these guys”?

The Cavaliers had to finish off a pesky Conroe squad the last game of the season just to garner the fourth and last playoff sport in district 12-6A.

With a regular season record of 14-16 (7-7 in district) the Cavaliers got hot quickly and have made an astonishing run through the playoffs. Breezing through the first three rounds with their only loss coming to Rockwall-Heath in the first round.

Led by “switch pitcher” Brandon Garza, who amazingly pitches from either side of the mound with either hand, the Cavaliers are in the regional semi-finals for only the second time in school history.

The first time being way back in 2009.

Only a junior, the ambidextrous Garza will most likely start game one and is 3-0 in the playoffs with key wins over Rockwall-Heath, Pearce, and Oak Ridge.

“We have to go as hard as we can this week,”said Garza.

“Its the fourth round and we’re losing for a win this Thursday to get things started.”

Also contributing mightily for the Cavlaliers are senior infielders Travis Washburn and Luke Trahan, who each homered in the final game against Oak Ridge.

Cavalier Coach Jason Washburn has his team primed for an another upset against a Round Rock team that finished the regular season 32-8 and ranked #11 by TxHighSchoolBaseball.com.

“Its going to be a really good series,” said Washburn.

“And its going to be the best show in town starting Thursday night (in Huntsville.)”

The Cavaliers will play their opening round game Thursday night at 6pm at Sam Houston State’s Don Sanders Stadium. Due to graduation ceremonies Friday night the series concludes Saturday evening at Dell Diamond Stadium in Round Rock with the second game of the series starting at 5:30pm.

A third game, if necessary, will start 30 minutes after the conclusion of the prior days game.

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5 questions on the John Wall trade

The Rockets made a big move. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images.

The Houston Rockets point guard carousel continued to spin Wednesday night, as the Woj bomb-iest of Houston-related Woj bombs erupted in the Space City:

For the third year in a row, the Rockets will begin the season with a new point guard, in an attempt to finally find someone that can play alongside James Harden. Let's take a look at how the Rockets got to this point, and what it means moving forward.

What led to the trade?

Russell Westbrook simply wanted out. Westbrook is the type of player that needs to be the number one ball handler and that simply wasn't ever going to happen on a James Harden led team. Other reports cited Westbrook's frustration with the lack of accountability and casual atmosphere within the locker room. Ultimately if anyone was going to be moved between Harden and Westbrook, it was always going to be Westbrook.

Why John Wall?

This one is another fairly straightforward answer: they both have relatively similar contracts. Each is making an absurdly overpriced $40 million this season, and both were disgruntled with their current team. Rockets General Manager Rafael Stone and Wizards GM Tommy Sheppard tossed the idea around a few weeks ago, but couldn't find a deal they liked. It was reported that discussions resumed Wednesday afternoon and within a few hours the deal was done in an almost one-for-one swap.

How does Wall fit?

This is a little more complicated because it's not exactly known what head coach Stephen Silas' game plan is. It's also difficult to predict whether or not Harden will still be on the roster when the season starts. But let's assume that Harden takes the court for the Rockets and that Silas' system resembles something similar to what we've seen in Houston for the past few years. In that case, Wall would be a slight upgrade to Westbrook. Westbrook is more athletic than Wall, but when healthy Wall was no slouch. In addition he's a much better defensive player and has much better court vision than Westbrook. Westbrook's assists were usually a bailout after attacking the lane with his head down, while Wall is more likely to set up a teammate.

This isn't to say that Wall doesn't need the ball though. He's fairly ball dominant, but not nearly as much as Westbrook. Harden proved last season that he's capable of effectively playing off the ball if necessary, so it seems like a better fit from a distribution rate alone. If they can find that sweet spot like they did with Chris Paul and stagger the lineups so that each star gets their own time to create, there's potential for an improved Rockets team more reminiscent of their 2018 run than the past two years.

What are the best and worst case scenarios?

The worst case is that the Rockets were sold a lemon. Wall has potential to be an upgrade, but comes with huge risk. He last took the court in 2018, where he was sidelined with a knee injury. He subsequently ruptured his Achilles in an accident at his home while recovering from the knee injury, forcing Wall off the court for almost two years. It's possible an extremely unfortunate Wall reinjures something and completely derails the machinations of the trade. Even if he's recovered fully, it will take time to get him up to game speed which could frustrate Harden on a team that can't afford a slow start in their stacked conference. Harden has managed to cultivate drama with just about every co-star he's played with, so there's no reason to assume this attempt would go any better. If things turn sour, Harden could be out the door even quicker than expected.

The best case scenario is that Wall arrives ready to play team basketball and resembles the better part of his pre-injury form. Wall and Harden buy into Silas' new system, space the floor, and take turns carving up the lane with dribble drives and kick outs to players who can actually hit from distance. This version of the Rockets could potentially be a 3-seed in this year's Western Conference.

Who won the trade?

At the moment the Rockets. Not only did they remove at least one of their locker room distractions, but they also gain a first round pick. If Wall can stay healthy and Silas can keep both stars happy, this team should be a lot more fun to watch than last season's clunker.

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