Written by Corbett Smith
Argyle captures first Class 3A boys basketball title with impressive 44-33 win over Corpus Christi Miller
AUSTIN --When John King was interviewed for the boys’ basketball position at Argyle five years ago, athletic director Todd Rodgers told him that Argyle kids just win.
From football to band, cross country to calculator applications, Argyle teams have competed for — and at times won — state titles. That basketball could be next was Rodgers’ point.
“Really, I thought he was just trying to sway me,” King said. “When you are an outsider looking in, you don’t get it.”
After a smothering performance in holding Corpus Christi Miller to 24.4 percent shooting, Argyle grabbed its first boys’ state basketball title Saturday with a 44-33 win in the Class 3A final.
The team has officially met the school’s high standards.
“This puts us over the hump for guys’ basketball, I know that,” forward Clarke Overlander said.
With 14 points and 10 rebounds, Overlander was named the game’s MVP. Fellow senior Connor York scored all 13 of his points after halftime for Argyle (31-8).
Miller (30-10) took its first lead of the game midway through the third quarter, 18-17, but York hit two threes over the next two minutes, restoring Argyle’s momentum.
“They just got me good, good looks,” York said.
A constant over the playoffs, including in the final, was Argyle’s ability to control the tempo.
Miller wanted to get out in transition, while Argyle wanted a more methodical pace.
“Not just this game but every game in the playoffs, we’ve been out-athleted, I believe,” King said. “We’ve played teams that like to play fast, up tempo. And what we’ve talked about is be patient offensively. If we have to make five passes — if we have to make 25 passes — we’ll know when the wide-open shot is there. Be patient until then.”
Argyle’s patient approach paid dividends in the second half. It got better looks at the basket, and managed to avoid turnovers — something that had plagued them against Lubbock Estacado in the semifinal.
Equally important were Argyle’s transition defense and interior size, with 6-4 Overlander and 6-5 Andrew Resch, which prevented Miller from finishing at the rim. Miller scored only eight points in the paint in the final, down from 32 in its upset of state No. 1 Waco LaVega in the semifinal.
“That’s what teams struggle with a little bit — they want to get into the paint, they want to get their transition game going, and we shut that paint down,” King said. “And it makes them be jump-shot guys. In an atmosphere like this, sometimes it’s hard to be jump-shot people.”
Miller made only three of 21 three-point attempts.