Sky Is The Limit For Yates

By Yolande Lezine
Updated: March 30, 2009

PawHOUSTON — As the city and the Third Ward Community continues to celebrate the Yates Lions Boys Basketball Team Class 4A State Title, many have failed to take a look at the future of the JY team.

11 juniors will return next season off of the Class 4A championship squad, coached by second-year veteran Greg Wise. Yates was determined to win the first high school state boy’s basketball championship since integration in Texas in 1967.

They used their 94-foot pressure defense to agitate and finally eliminate Dallas Kimball 94-78 in the Class 4A State Championship game before a near-capacity crowd of 15,521 at the Frank Erwin Center.

Yates junior shooting guard Joseph Young, son of former Yates and University of Houston standout Michael Young, was named the championship game’s MVP after turning in a 29 point performance on 9-of-18 shooting from the field, including seven three-pointers in just 30 minutes of action.

The Lions, who finished 34-1, defeated Mansfield Timberview 76-51 to get to the championship title game. The 94 points Yates scored set a University Interscholastic League Class 4A State Championship game record for a single team.

The former record was set by Beaumont Herbert in 1980 with 80 points.

Yates and Dallas Kimball also set a record for combined points (172) in a 4A title game and the 78 points for Kimball was also the most for a losing team in the 4A title game.

It was Yates first boys state basketball championship since defeating San Antonio Wheatley in 1949. That was the Prairie View Interscholastic League back then. The players thought that a 50-year drought in the 83rd year history of the school was long enough.

Three members of the Yates squad were named to the Conference 4A ,2009 UIL Boys All-Tournament Team. They are: Darius Gardner, Brandon Peters, and Joseph Young.


Brandon Peters (6-feet-1, 160, Junior Forward)

The shooting guard is a great athlete who can really get to the rim and finish. He is very quick and athletic. Averaged 20 points per game. He is ranked 90th in HoopsUSA and listed in the Top 200 players by Scouts Inc. in the Class of 2010.

Joseph Young (6-feet-2, 150, Junior Shooting Guard)

The son of former ” Phi Slama Jama” great Michael Young. He averaged 18 points per game. Listed in ESPNU Scouts Inc. Top 200 Players for the Class of 2010.

Darius Gardner (5-feet-9, 160, Junior Point Guard)

The floor general for the Lions. He averaged 14.0 points per game. Listed in ESPNU Scouts Inc. Top 200 Players for the Class of 2010.

Marshall Lange (6-feet, 180, Junior Point Guard)

The long lean guard/forward came into his own this season. Scored in double-figures in many games this year. Listed in ESPNU Scouts Inc. Top 200 Players for the Class of 2010.

Alex Davis (6-feet-7, 200, Junior Power Forward)

The junior post is the Lions inside man. He can also block shots. Listed in ESPNU Scouts Inc Top 200 Players for the Class of 2010.