Lytle helps West Boys win 101-100

TYE CHANDLER sports@theglenrosereporter.com
Peyton Lytle chips in nine points, 10 rebounds, an assist and two steals to help the West Boys win the 26th Annual Chicken Express All-Star Basketball Classic 101-100.

Usually one of the top players on either team when he took the floor for Glen Rose this season, Peyton Lytle found himself surrounded by hoops talent in Mineral Wells March 21.

Competing for the West Boys in the 26th Annual Chicken Express All-Star Basketball Classic, Lytle's squad emerged with a 101-100 victory. Players were chosen from coach nominations spanning 60 schools around Mineral Wells. He was the first Glen Rose boy nominated, much less selected, for the game since 2009.

"It felt pretty cool to play with a bunch of kids who were all pretty good," Lytle said. "It's as close to the next level as you can get in your sport. The defense wasn't as good as in a game that counts, but they moved the ball quick and rarely missed any shots. It wasn't just a lack of defense, the offense was really good."

Practice time as a team was in short supply.

"We only got one practice, so you don't really know what everybody does in certain situations," he said. "But to play at the level we did just shows how we can work together and get it going."

While Lytle didn't think he played particularly well, the senior still worked his way close to a double-double with nine points, 10 rebounds, an assist and two steals.

"I did have nine points, but my offensive side really wasn't there so I knew I had to help some other way," he said. "I was on the first team to start the game, but I had a terrible first half, so the coach switched me to the second team. I had a lot of defensive and hustle stats."

Both teams came to play.

"It was close the whole way," Lytle said. "They got up by 10 with about seven minutes left, but we slowly gained points back."

Lytle saw a couple of familiar faces on the court.

"There was a point guard from Godley on my team who I'd played against, and there was a point guard on the other team from Dublin I'd played against," he said.

While this was his last game representing Glen Rose, Lytle sees a lot more basketball in his future.

"I'm definitely going to pursue a college basketball opportunity," he said. "I'm going to a tryout at Wayland Baptist (University in Plainview) March 28. They have a JV team, so if I didn't make (the varsity) I could play and get moved up. Even if that doesn't work out, I'm going to try to play in college somewhere."

With four years in the Runnin' Tigers' program, including two seasons on varsity, the two-time all-district player has some fond memories in red and white.

"It was a pretty good four years playing for Glen Rose," he said. "We got better each year from all the time we spent in the gym. I went from one of the worst players to working hard to become one of the top players.

"The playoff win against Liberty Hill my junior year would probably be my favorite memory. The only one that might come close is when D.D. (Crawford) got his shorts pulled down this season. There were some great memories and fun times."