HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL / OIL BELT CLASSIC

Australia visitors provide a challenge

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For Glenn Olley, coming to the United States for a basketball tour is kind of old hat.

"Oh, I've been coming 10 years, maybe a little longer than that," Olley said.

Olley is one of the coaches of Southern Australia, a team of high schoolers from that country that's competing this weekend here in Kilgore in the Oil Belt Classic tournament.

Olley's son, Dylan Olley, had 17 points and 19 rebounds in a 59-55 loss to Kilgore at Kilgore College's Masters Gymnasium, on the tournament's first day.

The Australian team -- quite a bit bigger than the Bulldogs, man on man -- pushed Kilgore to the brink, clearly affected by Kilgore's speed but fundamentally playing good basketball.

And that's somewhat amazing, considering...

"They don't know each other," the older Olley admitted. One of his players chimed in. "We met at the airport four days ago."

The players said that in their brief time in the United States, they've enjoyed it. They're staying in a hotel here for the duration of the tournament -- it concludes today -- and then they'll be moving on to their next stop, a tournament in Las Vegas.

"It's been a good experience," the coach said.

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