NOCONA, Texas (TNN) - Every once in a while you get to see something special and the Nocona Lady Indians are seeing that right now.
After earning her second all-state recognition with an area-leading 25.8 points a game as a sophomore, Averee Kleinhans is leading Texoma in points and rebounds per game, 3-pointers made and free throws made, but head coach Kyle Spitzer says she helps the team with more than just what shows up in the stat book.
“Just the passion and the leadership and her competitiveness that she brings every night, it’s contagious," Nocona head coach Kyle Spitzer said. "You can tell that these girls feed off of that and into that and it helps us all.”
“We always know that if we ever need her that she can come in and do what we need," Nocona junior guard Sydni Messer said.
And this isn’t new for Kleinhans, having won the newcomer of the year in district 8-3A as a freshman, then co-MVP of the district last year.
But she says the support from her coaches and teammates has her playing even better than before.
“If you look back my freshman year I look way different than now," Nocona junior guard Averee Kleinhans said. "It’s just all the work and support that they have given me.”
Although the Lady Indians have one of the best players in Texoma, their best weapon is their team chemistry.
“We all trust each other and whenever we are together we know the other person can do what we need," Messer said.
“Since Little dribblers, we have all been playing with each other, so that’s been at least 10 years," Kleinhans said.
“You can tell that they truly care about one another and they play for one another," coach Spitzer said. "You can see it on the floor, you can see it in practice.”
With all that, the Lady Indians are undefeated in district play with a 19-9 overall record and they credit their recent success to their tough non-district schedule.
“You can tell now that district is here that we have learned from that and we have learned from those losses," coach Spitzer said. "We’ve learned how to play and learned how to overcome those things.”
“Even looking back, our defense and our offense is not even close to what it is now," Kleinhans said.
And their offense and defense is some of the best in the area outscoring teams by an average 14 points a game.
But as they showed Tuesday night with an overtime win over Childress, the Lady Indians know how to win close as well.
DISTRICT 8-3A STANDINGS
1. Nocona 4-0
2. Childress 3-1
3. Holliday 2-2
3. Bowie 2-2
5. Henrietta 1-3
6. City View 0-4