Missing Piece of Puzzle Found this Year for Lady Hawks
Last Summer a new student started practicing with the Varsity Volleyball girls as this young lady had played that sport at her old school.
What would be going through your mind if put in that situation when you are all of a sudden hanging out with future teammates and knowing that your sport would commence in 6-8 weeks.
Being separated from those friendships and your old stomping grounds would certainly take a special type of person to persevere their last year of high school in a new atmosphere.
Emma Gray had that situation at Canyon Lake this season as she started during those middle of summer months playing volleyball and without much rest, a segue into basketball, before finishing her one year of school in the hill country running track.
In Volleyball, this year’s Hawk team was well represented with the best Senior Class in their
short history, but at the same time losing one of their best blockers just a few weeks after school ended to graduation did show a kink in that armor.
Gray is tall and agile and would not only be a top blocker but a spiker too as she led the team in blocks with 67 which in one year, being a new record for rejections, for one year of games.
Bailey Drum finished her career in first place with 82 giving you an idea of how well the biggest detriment going into this season was filled with Gray in her blocking skills.
Gray also finished with 119 kills which is one place away from finishing in the top 10 of all time kills for the Hawks.
Canyon Lake would proceed to win their first District Championship and the school’s first championship in any team sport.
To know how dominant Wimberley had been in this sport and also beating the Texans twice when the best the Hawks had ever done in their history in these games, was scoring 25 points once in a 25-27 loss.
Yes, Canyon Lake had not beaten this powerhouse ever, not in a set or even a game within a set.
A missing piece for a good volleyball team to become better was accomplished in grand form.
Well, Gray would now launch into basketball, which had not made the playoffs since their 2010 season.
“I was new going into Basketball,” Gray responded on how she knew the girls in Volleyball vs. starting round ball.
This was not a district championship but it was a season good enough to get into the playoffs and stop that non-playoff drought.
Gray would lead the team in several categories while also possessing good ball handling skills.
Scoring 222 points which was a quarter of the total points scored by the team was a good indicator of showing how important this player would be for Canyon Lake’s basketball team.
Gray also used her height to lead the team with 172 rebounds and this was all done after missing games with an injury late in the season.
“I was out 4 of the games and when I got back to the court, I could not do any left side layups,” Gray said on her comeback.
Yes, the girls basketball team did well, but making the playoffs would not have been in the cards if Gray had not transferred to the Hawk Nest.
Canyon Lake knew they had a special player in their first home win over Bandera. Gray just chipped in 21 points with 16 rebounds, then add 8 assists and 2 blocks to that line score.
That will translate to a total game effort and domination on the hard wood.
As district was just finishing the first round, Gray had her injury that sidelined what was
turning out to be a special basketball year.
By the end of the season, Gray had returned to the lineup and helped get CL to the promised land and their first playoff since the 2010 season.
In her last game with Liberty Hill, Gray was facing player that was much taller, “I was a little humbled a bit as she was such a good player.”
Canyon Lake had made the playoffs in a year that realizing that goal was much tougher than their Volleyball counterpart.
Gray was not finished and the Hawks would have their best team effort ever in Track & Field by winning 2 track meets and scoring their most points in a district meet ever.
“I was not going to run track at my old school,” Gray said on her plans during her senior year if she would have stayed in Corpus. “There was less competition (in playing other schools) at Canyon Lake and that gave me greater opportunities.”
“In middle school and Junior Varsity in Corpus, it was easier for me in track,” Gray recalled. “I was not that fast and my last year I was sick and saw this as a chance to have a real varsity season.”
Read what Head Track Coach John Barthels, said about this young lady, “ Emma Gray was a great addition to the track team this year. This senior competed in multiple events for us this year and once I had learned she had run the hurdles before, I had her practicing with Coach Greene that afternoon.”
Coach Barthels continued, “She qualified for the regional track meet in the high jump, 100H, and the 4×200 relay. Emma did a great job for us this year, I wish I would have gotten to work with her more than 1 year. She had a great year, holding school records in the 4×200 and 4×400 relays.”
Gray was not bashful in her pursuit of doing all she could for her senior year, as she would score double digit points each week in her track endeavor.
Ok, yes, you can say that Canyon Lake might have won district in Volleyball this season and done well in track and field as well as competed and have a chance of making the playoffs in basketball.
The ReSporter would tell those people, it could be done, but how this transfer senior student competed was off the charts and by fitting in without a hint of problems in any of those sports speaks volumes on how great of an asset she was for the Hawks.
CL received a lot of talent this year when Emma Gray said she was all in for making her final year in high school a memorable one.
“I enjoyed all of the sports,” Gray closed. “I did not find it being a hard time in acclimating.”
What a treasure Canyon Lake acquired in an athlete that had a chance to help and improve each sport she participated in here at the Hawk Nest.
The Hawk community will miss Gray as well as many of the Seniors and thanks for sharing your gifts with us.