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Current Issue
January 12, 2012






Lake Info

Normal Lake Level
is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 315.37
Water Temperature:
51 degrees - top
51 degrees - bottom

Sports in Brief

Geocaching at Purtis Creek
Purtis Creek State Park will hold a "basics of geocaching" program from 3 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14.
Geocaching is a type of treasure hunt using a GPS unit to help you find hidden "caches" placed by people all over the world.
Geocaches are everywhere - from just down the street to the most remote wilderness areas.
The program at Purtis Creek will teach the basics of using a GPS for geocaching and how to get started. Meet at the Amphitheater. For more information, contact the park at (903) 425-2332.

Stargazing at Purtis Creek
Purtis Creek State Park will host an evening of stargazing from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14.
Make a star wheel and learn how to use it, learn about the solar system and view the night sky through a telescope. Weather permitting, meet at the over flow camping parking lot.
For more information, contact the park at (903) 425-2332.

Take Only Pictures, Leave Only Footprints
Purtis Creek State Park will host a "Take Only Pictures, Leave Only Footprints" event from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28.
Learn the basics of Leave No Trace and how photography can help grasp your memories. Bring your digital camera and learn a few techniques for taking nature pictures, afterwards, there will be a hike for a scavenger hunt of things in nature, then a review of what was found.
For more information, contact Purtis Creek State Park at (903) 425-2332.

Tri-County soccer signups
The Tri-County Soccer Association will be holding 2012 Spring Signups from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28; Thursday, Feb. 2; and Saturday, Feb. 4 at the McDonald’s in Gun Barrel City.
Players must be at least four years old prior to Jan.1 in order to participate.
The fee is $60 for new players, and $40 for children returning from the Fall 2011 season.
For more details and information, call Candi Conner at (903) 887-3138.

Upcoming Events

Basketball (boys)

Jan. 13
• Eustace @ Blooming Grove – 5 p.m.
• Mabank @ Kemp – 5 p.m.
Jan. 17
• Eustace @ Buffalo – 5 p.m.
• Kemp @ North Forney – 5 p.m.
• Mabank @ Crandall – 5 p.m.

Basketball (girls)

Jan. 13
• Eustace @ Blooming Grove – 5 p.m.
• Mabank @ Kemp – 5 p.m.
Jan. 17
• Eustace @ Buffalo – 5 p.m.
• Kemp @ North Forney – 5 p.m.
• Mabank @ Crandall – 5 p.m.




























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Sports Highlights

Lady Panthers push toward playoffs
By Sam Epps
Sports Editor

MABANK–It may be too early to start talking about playoff games, but it’s never too early to begin the run to the playoffs.
The Mabank Lady Panthers have the confidence, speed and drive to win, and a playoff bid is firmly in their minds.

Monitor Photo/Sam Epps
The 2011-12 Mabank Lady Panther basketball team is (from left, front row) Morgen Gaona, Allie Duke, Kaitlyn Holyfield, Kourtney Holyfield and Ashton Norman; (back row) Trudy Marler, Makenna Allen, Molly Groom, Olivia Pannell, Alex Brady and Cheyenne Alldredge.

Although many of the girls don’t have varsity experience, those returning players from last year’s team have some playoff experience under their belts.
“Our depth is a little shallower than last year,” Lady Panther head coach Ashleigh Weeaks said. “We have a playoff game under our belt and are playing with a lot of confidence.”
Last year, the Lady Panthers were bi-district champions, but lost in the Area round of the playoffs to Spring Hill.
This year, even without strong outside shooter Sarah Springer and the energetic Natalie Torres, the Lady Panthers are beginning to see several girls step up to fill those shoes.
Three of Weeaks’ seniors have started on the varsity team since they were freshmen – guard Ashton Norman, forward Cheyenne Alldredge and post Olivia Pannell.
Pannell is 6-2 and boasts a strong inside game. Off the bench, the 6-0 Molly Groom is a worthy replacement.
Alldredge and sophomore forward Makenna Allen are both “very versatile and can play very well inside and outside,” Weeaks said, while Norman “is at the front of the press, is great with her hands and very quick.”
Junior point guard Kourtney Holyfield is a difference-maker on the court. “She’s our rock, without her we are a totally different team,” Weeaks said.
Weeaks describes her as having great outside shooting ability, strong defensive penetration, patient and having great vision.
Kaitlyn Holyfield has stepped up and is showing a lot of confidence and is a valuable asset, Weeaks said.
Morgen Gaona “is our best practice player, she pushes everybody and has lots of energy,” Weeaks added. “She can replace Natalie (Torres) in providing that ‘spark’ on the court.”
The bench is in good shape, with plenty of fresh legs ready to play, but they don’t have a lot of experience.
“When we get in any kind of foul trouble it can be hard to get back in the groove,” Weeaks commented.
With a current record of 14-6 overall, and 1-0 in District 13-3A after defeating Kaufman 55-36, last Friday, even the experience issue hasn’t been a big issue.
While Crandall is perpetually a strong team, Weeaks feels that the North Forney Lady Falcons will be a threat to Mabank’s district championship run.
“They have everybody coming back and are even more athletic than last year,” she said.
On the other hand, she knows North Forney will have enough trouble of their own when they face Mabank.
“Our size and experience makes us lethal,” Weeaks exclaimed.
“We want it more than anybody and we have a very good work ethic. We know what our goals are and are ready to go get it.”
Watch for the Lady Panthers to play a very aggressive defensive game, and an increasingly aggressive offensive game.
They aren’t locked into a man-to-man or a zone defense, but will change their approach depending on the team and the situation.
On offense, they will be versatile with a lot of motion. They will spread their offense out and keep opposing defenses wondering.
Weeaks is a defensive-minded coach, firmly believing that defense wins championships.
This is her second year as the Lady Panther head coach, and her fourth year coaching at Mabank. She also teaches Algebra I.


Mabank girls start district with win
By Sam Epps
Sports Editor

KAUFMAN–The Mabank Lady Panthers started their District 13-3A schedule with a 55-36 win over the hosting Kaufman Lady Lions.
Three Lady Panthers scored in the double digits, totaling 40 points between them.
Makenna Allen led the Lady Panthers with 16 points on the evening, while Kourtney Holyfield scored 14 points and Ashton Norman added 10.
Cheyenne Alldredge put nine points on the board for Mabank.
The win in Kaufman also gives the Lady Panthers an impressive, 14-6, overall mark, including a 47-36 win over Canton Dec. 16.
Against Canton, Holyfield led the Mabank offense with 13 points, while Allen and Alldredge both scored 10 points.
Over the Christmas holiday break, the Lady Panthers competed at the Idabel, Okla. basketball tournament, and had a chance to take third place.
Mabank beat Valliant, 44-32, in their first game.
Allen scored 10 points for Mabank, Norman scored nine and Kourtney Holyfield scored eight.
Olivia Pannell put six points on the board for the Lady Panthers, and Alldredge added five points.
In the semi-final game, Mabank lost to the hosting Idabel girls, 49-44.
Against Idabel, Norman scored 15 points while Alldredge and Allen each scored nine points.
With the loss, Mabank moved to compete for third place against Tulsa Edison.
In another tight and hard-fought matchup, the Lady Panthers fell by four points, 53-49.
Allen scored 16 points against Tulsa, and Norman scored 14 points in the matchup.
Pannell and Alldredge each scored seven points for the Lady Panthers, Kourtney Holyfield scored three points and Alex Brady scored two.
The Lady Panthers hosted the Ferris Lady Yellowjackets Tuesday and will travel to Kemp Friday.

Teams now forming for youth flag football league
Special to The Monitor
MABANK–Teams are now forming for the second season of Tri-County Area Youth NFL Flag Football.
Youth NFL flag football is a non-contact, 5-on-5 flag football.
The league will not only give young people a chance to play football and have fun, it will also teach life lessons and skills.
Some of the benefits include:
• The development of basic football fundamentals, football mechanics and football concepts.
• Help to develop character.
• Help young people learn team work and life lessons.
• All players will participate (run and catch the ball).
• Have fun while getting exercise.
• Reduced time commitment from other sports.
• All coaches are background checked and receive training
The cost to participate is $85, and includes NFL jersey, flags, city fees and insurnce.
There will be registration days – Saturday, Jan. 21, and Saturday, Feb. 4, at the Mabank Junior High School gym. registration time is from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. on both days.
There will be four NFL flag divisions:
• K, first, and second grades
• Third and fourth grades
• Fifth and sixth grades
• Seventh and eighth grades.
Beginning Thursday, March 8, and continuing through Thursday, April 19, games will be played at the Mabank Little League practice field at George Watss Park in Mabank on Thursday evenings.
There will be no games over Spring Break.
Coaches can bring a team of seven players, or individuals can register and be placed on a team from their area.
Practices will be limited to two hours per practice, one day per week.
If you have any questions please call Ron Anderson at (469) 688-0175.



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