Sports and Outdoors

     

 Lake Info

Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 322.02 Water Temperature:
49  degrees - top
47
degrees - bottom

 

 

  Paris eliminates Mabank at Kaufman
Monitor Staff Reports
KAUFMAN–The Paris Lady Wildcats handed the Mabank Lady Panthers two losses to eliminate the Mabank girls from the Kaufman Holiday Classic basketball tournament Monday and Tuesday.
Mabank’s girls sandwiched a win over the Athens Lady Hornets between the Paris losses at the tournament, played at Norman Junior High in Kaufman.
The Lady Panthers reopened District 15-4A play Saturday (sort of) with their first-round bye, and will host the Terrell Lady Tigers Tuesday, Jan. 5, with a 5 p.m. sub-varsity contest opening a three-game slate.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Mabank Lady Panther sophomore defenders Cheyenne Alldredge (left) and Maegan Olivarez (center) disrupt a drive by Athens Lady Hornet senior Alex Furr (11), with Lady Hornet Treka Franklin in the background, during their second-round matchup at the annual Kaufman Holiday Classic basketball tournament Monday. Furr led all scorers with 32 points, but Mabank won, 64-56.

Friday, Jan. 8, the Mabank girls travel to Red Oak, and then will return home Monday, Jan. 11, to host the Mesquite Poteet Lady Pirates. Both evenings open with 6 p.m. sub-varsity matches.
At Kaufman, the Lady Panthers opened the tournament Monday with a fast-paced 72-68 loss to the Lady Wildcats of District 10-3A.
Sara Springer had the hot hand for the Lady Panthers, hitting for 29 points, with Chelsea Alldredge adding 12 points.
The Lady Panthers also got nine points from freshman Kourtney Holyfield, six points each from Ashton Norman and Cheyenne Alldredge, four points from Jeanice Mojica and two points from Ashley Hammack.
In the second round Monday evening, the Lady Panthers had to come from behind in the second half to knock off Athens 64-56.
Mabank went inside to Mojica, who responded with a team-high 25 points. Springer had eight, Norman had seven, both Hammack and Holyfield had six, Cheyenne Alldredge five, Chelsea Alldredge four and Maegan Olivarez had three points.
Lady Hornet guard Alex Furr led all scorers with 32 points, but no other Lady Hornet had more than five.
Tuesday, the Lady Panthers again faced Paris, and the result was the same, as the Lady Wildcats edged Mabank 53-50.
Mabank had much more balanced scoring in the rematch, as Chelsea Alldredge led them with 12 points, with Springer and Olivia Pannell both adding 11 points each.
Norman and Hammack both had six points, while Holyfield and Mojica had two points each.

 

Balanced Panthers looking for playoffs
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

MABANK–Just like last year, the Mabank Panthers have a little size and some quickness, but they’ve found more balance in their offensive attack, which will help going into an extremely tough district slate.
The balance had to come because the Panthers don’t have last year’s District 15-4A Offensive Player of the Year, Kolton Browning, now at the University of Louisiana at Monroe.
It’s probably not possible to replace Browning’s 27 points and 13 boards a game with one player, but so far this year, the Panthers are doing a good job at spreading the scoring around.
“Collectively, we’re a lot more balanced than we have been,” veteran head coach Mark Allen noted.
Now in his 15th year as the Panther head coach and 23rd year in education, Allen said this year’s team has size and fairly good experience, with three starters and three other part-time players returning from last year.
“Most of the guys know what they’re supposed to do. It’s just a matter of getting it done,” Allen said. “We’re getting pretty much what we expected, although we always want to play a little better.”
Leading the returnees are a pair of high-scoring senior forwards, Tyler Fisher and Griffin Marshall, along with senior guard Jacob Woodard, who gives the Panthers a serious 3-point scoring threat.
Senior forward Tray Phillips saw a lot of playing time last year, while two sophomores, Jordan Allen (the coach’s son) and Unterrious Toliver, also return after seeing spot minutes last year.
Joining them are three players off the junior varsity, senior guard James Burkhalter, senior forward Trey Fernandez and junior center T.C. Greene.
One of Allen’s concerns is offensive production, now that Browning has departed.
“Right now, we’ve got three guys who usually score in double figures,” he said. “I’d like to have that fourth guy to come in and give us double-digit points, although we’ve got a few who are that close.”
Both Marshall and Fisher have clearly stepped up their offensive game during an extremely tough pre-district schedule.
“Griffin is playing a lot better, and we’re doing some things to try and give him more offensive opportunities,” Allen said. “He’s a lot more focused this year. I’d say Tray Pillips is, as well.
“Both of them (Marshall and Phillips) have the ability to be difference-makers,” Allen said. “Tray is an exceptionally good ball-handler for his size (6-4).”
Toliver comes off the bench, and usually takes on the opponent’s point guard to disrupt the offensive flow.
“‘Dr. Defense’ is what we actually call him,” Allen said with a grin. “He brings energy onto the floor. The pace of the game definitely changes when he’s out there.
“Tyler and Jacob are our captains this year, and they’ve been very solid for us,” Allen added. “Tyler is our leading scorer and rebounder. He has just one speed – wide open.
“Woodard’s 3-point shooting gives us the ability to spread the floor,” he said.
Burkhalter has been in the program since his freshman year, and is “a very smart player,” Allen said. “He’s doing a good job for us at point guard.”
Fernandez is the only football player on the squad, and brings some size (6-4) and muscle onto the floor.
“Trey is a good athlete, and he’ll be a big help once his basketball skills drop into place,” Allen said.
“Jordan knows the game extremely well. He has the potential to be an eight- to 10-point a night guy for us,” he added.
“T.C. has the size (6-7) and he’s got long arms,” Allen said. “He’s a very good 15-foot jump shooter for us.”
Allen deliberately set up a seriously difficult pre-district schedule in order to prepare the Panthers for 15-4A play.
The Panthers will open District 15-4A play on the road against the Terrell Tigers Tuesday, Jan. 5, before returning home to host Red Oak Friday, Jan. 8.
Lancaster’s Tigers, currently ranked No. 4 in the state, are the district favorite, but Red Oak also flirted briefly with a top 20 ranking before the Christmas break.
“Terrell is always very athletic team, and have some key players returning for them,” Allen said. “West Mesquite is the same way – they’ve got three of their top four back, with size and an exceptional point guard.
“Forney is a much improved team,” he added. “They moved some guards up from the JV, and they’re really playing well for them.
“Lancaster will be tough. They’ve got some awfully good players,” Allen said. “Outside of that, everybody else is about the same as last year.
“Poteet has a new coach and his son is at guard, so they’re probably a little better,” he added. “I can’t find an easy one on my schedule.”
 

Lady Bulldogs plan playoff run
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

EUSTACE–Things are looking up for the Eustace Lady Bulldogs basketball program, and another young team might have it in them to make a run at a playoff spot this year.
In December, the Lady Bulldogs found themselves competing in a tournament championship game for the first time in the program’s history, and the best thing about that is this team has just one senior.
Second-year head coach DaLinda Cassell sees the progress the girls are making, which has resulted in six wins going into the Christmas break.
“We just need to learn to play four quarters,” Cassell said. “We need to average 10 points a quarter. That’s our goal. Once we can do that, we’ll win.
“This year, they actually believe in themselves more than last year,” she added. “Me staying (for a second year) shows somebody else believes in them, too. That was one of their biggest fears, that I would go somewhere else.”
That’s a reasonable fear, given that previous coaches haven’t stayed around after the first year, which makes it pretty tough to get a program established.
The team’s only senior, multi-sport standout Jenny McConathy, has proved to be the key to the offense and defense at the point guard spot, instead of inside, where one might expect to find a 5-11 athlete.
“She sees the floor well for me, with her height and her strength,” Cassell said. “She sees the floor and help us run our break.
“This year, when people have pressed us, they’ve gotten out of the press quickly,” she added. “We’ve cut our turnovers in half.”
A pleasant surprise has been junior move-in Ashlie Phillips, who has the quickness to get open for McConathy’s passes and the ability to hit the shot.
“She kicks our offense off,” Cassell said. “She averages double-digits every game (Phillips is the team’s leading scorer), and she has intensity on defense. She gets after people and makes it hard for them to score.”
Last year’s District 14-3A Newcomer of the Year, Allie Cass, is back for her junior season, but has been mired in a serious shooting slump.
“This year, she hasn’t been on,” Cassell said. “She should be averaging 12 to 14 points per game, but she’s hitting only eight right now. The ball will go in, but it’ll fall back out.
“She’s got a quick first step, and she’s strong underneath,” Cassell said.
Joining McConathy and Cass as the third returning starter is junior forward Vanessa Lopez.
“She knows her role,” Cassell said. “She plays good defense and averages about six points a game for me.”
Joining the three returnees are two sophomores who moved up the varsity late last season, this season’s volleyball Newcomer of the Year Catania Grant and Megan Renteria.
“(Renteria) brings energy to the defense when I put her in,” Cassell said. “Catania has been ill (strep throat), but she’s strong hitting the boards. She runs the floor well and is one of the quickest people in the district.”
Newcomers include two other volleyball players, junior Harmony Allen and 5-10 senior Aurora Beasley, along with junior guard Alyssa Walker.
The Lady Bulldogs will open District 14-3A play at home Friday, Jan. 8, against the Mineola Lady Yellowjackets, but Cassell expects the road to the district crown to run through Canton.
“Canton probably will take first because of their program,” Cassell (a former Canton standout) said. “They are the most established and most successful program in the district.
“I think next would be Kemp, because of the people he (coach Kent Smith) has back,” she added. “I know they’re going to be tough, and I think they’ll give Canton a run for their money. It’s possible Canton isn’t as strong as they have been in the past.
“I’m picking us third,” Cassell said. “When we played Mineola at their place, we outscored them in every quarter but one and lost by seven. He lost two of his better players.
“Van lost everybody (to graduation),” she said. “If we play well, there’s no reason why we can’t win.”
A key game will come in the Feb. 9 district finale, when Kemp hosts Canton, probably to settle the top two playoff spots, Cassell said.
“Our first game is against Mineola here, and Van comes here,” she added. “Who’s going to take that third spot? I know we’ll have a good shot, if we take care of the basketball, execute our offense, play sound defense and rebound.”
 

Upcoming games

Girls basketball

Jan. 5
MHS vs Terrell*
KHS @ Quinlan Ford

Jan. 8
MHS @ Red Oak*
KHS vs Van*
EHS vs Mineola*

Jan. 11
MHS vs Mesquite Poteet*

Jan. 12
KHS vs Wills Point*
EHS @ Canton*

Jan. 15
MHS @ Forney*
EHS vs KHS*

Jan. 19
MHS vs Lancaster*
KHS vs Mineola*
EHS @ Wills Point*

Jan. 22
MHS @ West Mesquite*
KHS @ Canton*
EHS vs Van*
(*District contest)
Boys basketball

Jan. 5
MHS @ Terrell*
KHS vs Westwood
EHS @ Cross Roads

Jan. 8
MHS vs Red Oak*
EHS vs Brownsboro

Jan. 11
KHS @ Quinlan Ford

Jan. 12
MHS @ Mesquite Poteet*

Jan. 15
MHS vs Forney*
EHS vs KHS*

Jan. 19
MHS @ Lancaster*
KHS vs Mineola*
EHS @ Wills Point*
Soccer

Jan. 2
EHS vs Kemp (boys only)
MHS girls @ Greenville (scr)

Jan. 5
MHS girls vs NForney (scr)
EHS b&g vs Ferris

Jan 7-9
EHS hosts tournament
(KHS, MHS boys)
MHS g @ Mt. Pleasant trn.

 


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