Former Guyer standout makes big jump for Yanks

Former Guyer catcher KJ Alexander rounds third base in a game back in 2009. Now, he's fresh off a promotion to Double-A in the Yankees organization after completely bypassing Class-A ball. DRC File Photo

Former Guyer catcher KJ Alexander rounds third base in a game back in 2009. Now, he’s fresh off a promotion to Double-A in the Yankees organization after completely bypassing Class-A ball. DRC File Photo

The day my story about Jacob Rhame’s recent promotion from High-A Rancho Cucamongo to Double-A Tulsa in the Los Angeles Dodgers system and the shorter it made his path to the big leagues ran on Saturday, I also got some other news on another former Guyer baseball standout making progress through the hierarchy of pro baseball.

Now Rhame’s former Guyer teammate KJ Alexander, aka Kevin Alexander, was promoted within the New York Yankees farm system, and it wasn’t the typical promotion.

The former Guyer star catcher, who went on to play for local powerhouse Dallas Baptist, had a pretty nice year in Rookie League last season with the Gulf Coast Yankees, hitting .304 with an .867 OPS, a homer and eight RBIs. He also walked 15 times to go with his 17 strikeouts.

But instead of starting the 2015 season back in the Rookie League, Alexander was called up, and not just to the logical next step of Class-A ball. Alexander got the call straight to Double-A Trenton, completely bypassing Class-A. He’s now on a roster loaded with some of the Yankees’ top prospects, and judging by the lofty promotion, he could be working his way into similar promise. Not bad at all for any prospect, especially not for an undrafted free agent signee.

Guyer tight end picks up Michigan offer

While Shawn Robinson is stealing all of the recruiting spotlight in Denton, and with good reason given his hefty list of big-time offers, one of the guys Robinson will be throwing to this upcoming season picked up a big one on Monday.

Sophomore tight end Brian Polendey, a big 6-5, 240-pounder who will be a junior in the fall along with Robinson, was offered by Michigan on Monday, according to Guyer head coach John Walsh — his second FBS offer after Houston offered recently.

Polendey, who moved to Denton from Washington last year, played on the JV as a sophomore and has grown into a guy who has a chance to be an elite tight end prospect in an age when big pass-catching tight ends are starting to be coveted in the mold of your Rob Gronkowskis, Jimmy Grahams, etc.

Polendey will give the Wildcats a weapon they’ve never really had before. They’ve had big guys at tight end, who are basically a sixth offensive lineman (Cole Underwood, Xavier Brown, etc.) and then they’ve had basically one pass-catching tight end in Austin Otto, who was a great high school tight end but didn’t have elite size like Polendey does.

So be ready, folks. The Guyer offense will likely have some new looks to it in 2016 with a new kind of weapon. But you won’t get a sneak peak on Thursday in Guyer’s spring game because Polendey will be sidelined with a minor ankle turn, along with several other starters who are dealing with minor bumps and bruises.

Robinson nation’s top QB in 2017 class

Quarterback Shawn Robinson eludes a Keller Central defender

Guyer quarterback Shawn Robinson eludes a Keller Central defender last season. David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle

This isn’t too surprising, but it’s news, nonetheless.

Guyer sophomore quarterback Shawn Robinson, who is set to begin spring football with the Wildcats on April 27 to prime for his junior season, has been getting tons of accolades and big-time offers recently, and on Tuesday he added another.

Robinson, who recently picked up offers from defending national champ Ohio State along with Alabama to add to his prestigious list, was named the top quarterback in the country in the latest Top 247 for 2017 released by recruiting website 247 Sports.

Robinson is the No. 11 player on the list and the top-ranked quarterback and has a four-star rating from the service. Other services, including Scout, have tagged Robinson with the rare five-star rating.

“We think he’s the best quarterback in the country regardless of classification, so I’m glad everyone else thinks so too,” Guyer head coach John Walsh said.

Robinson burst on to the scene last year as a young sophomore, having just turned 15 a month before the season began. He ended up throwing for 2,799 yards and 33 touchdowns with just five picks. On the ground, he rushed for 1,416 yards and 17 scores while leading Guyer to an area-round playoff berth.

Walsh said he has to pinch himself every once and a while to make sure he isn’t dreaming thinking about the prospect of coaching the 6-3, 195-pound Robinson for two more years at the high school level.

“It’s definitely something that makes you feel good as a program knowing you have your quarterback solidified with that kind of talent and that kind of leadership,” Walsh said. “He brings so much to the table with his physical talent, but he’s also extremely humble. I don’t know who all reads the papers and the Internet to see he’s the No. 1 guy, but you wouldn’t know it just seeing him at school.”

Hodapp set to become Guyer softball ironman

Guyer's Hannah Hodapp (3) connects against Burleson-Centennial in a playoff game last May at Saginaw High School in Fort Worth. David Minton/DRC

Guyer’s Hannah Hodapp (3) connects against Burleson-Centennial in a playoff game last May at Saginaw High School in Fort Worth. David Minton/DRC

Any time a Guyer softball player can break an all-time school record held by Kylee Crosek, it’s a pretty big deal.

Crosek was the first softball star for Guyer in the fledgling years of the program as a four-year starter. By the time she was a senior, she helped lead the Lady Wildcats to the Class 4A state tournament in Austin. Simply put, Crosek holds just about every school record at Guyer. I once saw her intentionally walked to lead off a game. That tells you what you need to know.

But on Friday, Crosek is losing one of her school records, and she’ll be on hand to see it as a member of the junior varsity coaching staff while doing her student teaching at Guyer and helping out with softball.

That’s because Hannah Hodapp will set a new school record for career starts when she steps on the field to start for Guyer against Keller in a key District 5-6A game to determine first place in the district and start off the second round of district play.

Hodapp started as a freshman and has never left the starting lineup since. She entered Wednesday’s win against Ryan hitting .476 with a .500 on-base percentage and a 1.119 OPS. She has a double, a triple and a homer to go with 13 RBIs and 16 runs in 12 games played. She has eight stolen bases and has been caught just once.

Hodapp, a West Texas A&M signee, will make her 111th career start, passing up Crosek’s mark of 110, which Hodapp tied on Wednesday night in a 10-0 win over Ryan. In that game, Hodapp went 1-for-2 with a walk, an RBI and a stolen base, also scoring on a passed ball at home.

Guyer football schedule features 4 Thursday games

Guyer sophomore quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) tries to get to the sideline as Ryan sophomore linebacker Tyreke Davis (21) hangs on Nov. 7 at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex. David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle

Guyer sophomore quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) tries to get to the sideline as Ryan sophomore linebacker Tyreke Davis (21) hangs on Nov. 7 at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex. David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle

Guyer will play four — count ‘em FOUR — Thursday night games in 2015 and will be the first game played at Allen Eagle Stadium since 2013, assuming they can get that $60 million fortress back up and running by August.

All four games against Keller ISD schools are on the road and will all be played on Thursday nights. The schedule also features a home date against defending Class 5A Division I state champion Ennis, which Guyer defeated on a last-second field goal last year at Ennis.

So without further delay, here it is, folks. The Guyer football schedule for the 2015 season.

Date Opponent Time
Friday, Aug. 21 At Euless Trinity (scrimmage) 7 p.m.
Friday, Aug. 28 At Allen 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 4 Ennis 7 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 11 At Wichita Falls Rider 7 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 18 OPEN
Thursday, Sept. 24 At Keller 7 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 2 Justin Northwest 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8 At Keller Fossil Ridge 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 15 At Keller Central 7 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 23 Trophy Club Nelson 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 29 At Keller Timber Creek 7 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 6 Ryan 7 p.m.

 

Guyer’s Thompson decommits from Kansas

Guyer senior defensive lineman Carl Thompson (2) grabs Allen running back David Feliciano (7), in the season opener on August 29 at Apogee Stadium.

With the NCAA recruiting dead period coming to an end soon and programs likely making their final pushes across the area, there appears to be one local star back on the open market, so to say.

Guyer defensive lineman Carl Thompson announced via his Twitter early this morning that he has officially decommitted from Kansas, where he committed back in June. According to 247 Sports, Thompson has 17 offers, including six from major-conference schools: Kansas, Duke, Wake Forest, Northwestern, Minnesota and Vanderbilt.

National signing day is Feb. 4, which is now less than a month away. Thompson has a rare blend of size, speed and athleticism that could make him a defensive end or a defensive tackle at the next level, and Guyer head coach John Walsh said he’ll be a dominant force wherever he ends up.

“Carl is a dynamic player in the trenches that I have no doubt will be an impact player at the next level,” Walsh said.

Thompson was injured in the Wildcats’ eighth game of the season and ended up needing surgery on his knee. There was a chance he could’ve returned had the Wildcats made it to the state semifinal, but they were defeated in the second round by Southlake Carroll.

Thompson finished the year with 36 tackles, including 16 behind the line of scrimmage and three sacks. He also tallied 20 quarterback hurries and had a forced fumble to go with a fumble recovery.

Weekend recap: Denton ISD has perfect weekend

Guyer senior running back Anthony Taylor (10) and sophomore quarterback Shawn Robinson (3) celebrate in the end zone after one of Guyer's many touchdowns against Plano on Saturday at AT&T Stadium.

It’s been a pretty usual thing for us to see two high schools from Denton ISD in the Texas high school football playoffs, and that’s the case this year, too. It’s a different duo this year, but the results were the same as both Guyer and Denton won their playoff openers.

Steve Gamel and I recap the area playoff action from the weekend and look ahead a bit to Round 2 with this week’s recap.

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Weekend recap: Playoff spots and district titles galore!

Guyer senior wide receiver Adam Scott (1) and senior tight end Xavier Brown (80) celebrate after a touchdown against Keller Timber Creek on Thursday at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex.

Guyer clinched its district championship after Keller lost. Argyle clinched no worse than a share of district championship with a big rival game coming on Friday. Denton clinched its first playoff berth in the Kevin Atkinson era, and Ryan is fighting to keep a historic playoff streak alive. It was a busy week in area high school football, and my cohort Steve Gamel and I relive it here.

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What you need to know: Keller Timber Creek

Guyer senior running back Anthony Taylor (10) runs for yardage in a game earlier this season against Keller.

All that separates Guyer from its first district championship at the state’s largest classification is a new program riding a five-game losing streak after starting the season 3-0 before hitting the District 5-6A schedule. The Wildcats are still a bit shorthanded defensively, but will have plenty of firepower in Thursday night’s game against the Falcons as they look to continue to build toward being playoff ready with the postseason just two weeks away.

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Guyer front seven majorly shorthanded

r senior defensive lineman Carl Thompson (2) grabs Allen junior running back David Feliciano (7), in a game earlier this season. Thompson, along with fellow defensive starters Michael Carrillo and Tevan McAdams, will miss Friday's game against Trophy Club Nelson.

When Guyer takes the field against Trophy Club Nelson tonight, the Wildcats will be preparing for a heavy dose of senior running back Courtney Miles, the district’s top rusher in just about every category — carries, yards, touchdowns, just to name a few.

The Wildcats have plenty of firepower to combat Miles up front, but they’ll be missing some key cogs to their top-notch run defense as they’ll be without three starters: defensive tackle Carl Thompson, linebacker Michael Carrillo and defensive end Tevan McAdams.

Thompson, a Kansas pledge, along with Carrillo are the heart and soul of the Guyer defense and huge parts of of the Wildcats’ run defense. Thompson has drawn double-teams all season and has still managed to wreak havoc in opposing backfields. He is out indefinitely, though not for the rest of the season, with an undisclosed injury suffered in practice this week.

Carrillo is being held out of the game due to a minor hamstring issue, and Guyer head coach John Walsh said he’d play if the game was of more importance. McAdams, a speed rusher off the edge, who has forced a couple of big turnovers this year, is suspended for the game for violating team policy. He’ll return next week against Keller Timber Creek.

McAdams has a more-than-capable replacement at end in Cameron Wax, who has played plenty this season and made his presence felt. Stepping in for Carrillo will be Dale Hodge, a player Guyer coaches have been pretty big on for quite some time. P.J. Brousard and Tim Burley will fill the void left by Thompson, which might be the biggest void of them all due his tendency to draw constant double-teams.