Sports and Outdoors


 Lake Info

Normal Lake Level is 322.00 feet above Mean Sea Level.
Current level for Cedar Creek Lake is: 322.04
Water Temperature:
na degrees - top
63 degrees - bottom



New turf, track dedication

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey

Eustace High School athletes and school board members watch as Eustace Independent School District Superintendent Dr. Coy Holcombe (center) cuts the ceremonial ribbon during an official dedication of Bulldog Stadium’s new artificial turf and new track surface Monday. A powder puff football game followed the brief ceremony.

Vandals nip Panthers in bidistrict, 2-0
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

MESQUITE–Two singles and two errors in the first Van at-bat turned out to be the difference Friday, as the Van Vandals squeaked out a narrow 2-0 bidistrict playoff victory against the Mabank Panthers.
The Vandals, who finished second in District 14-3A with a 7-3 record, improved to 18-10 on the season, while the Panthers, who finished third in District 13-3A, ended their season at 11-10.
Van will face the District 15-3A winner, Mineola, in an area round game/series at a site and time to be determined.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Van shortstop Zach Harrison (25) gets picked off by Mabank Panther first baseman David Taylor, who ran down and tagged Harrison during the third inning of Van’s 2-0 bidistrict baseball playoff win Friday.

Van pitcher Allen Dike notched seven strikeouts and didn’t issue a walk as he limited the Panthers to just two hits in the complete-game shutout.
Panther sophomore Kolton Browning allowed just four hits for the game after giving up two first-inning singles, and notched six strikeouts while issuing two walks.
Both teams turned in outstanding defensive plays to blunt scoring threats during the two-hour contest at J.J. Tillery Field, next to West Mesquite High School.
Browning gave up a leadoff single to Vandal Blake Pennington, and the next batter, Caleb Neill, reached first base on the first of two Panther errors.
Brice Stanford then stroked a two-RBI single, scoring both Pennington and Neill.
Stanford’s hit proved to be the only RBI hit of the night. Stanford was stranded after Browning got Wade Aaron and Matthew Goode to hit into routine outs, sandwiched around a strikeout of Talon Wiggons.
Dike notched his first strikeout of Panther leadoff man Mikey Shelton, but catcher Chancz Sullivan singled and went to second on a passed ball.
Sullivan was stranded, however, when Browning and Mark Groom both hit into routine outs.
In the second, the Vandals put a runner at third when Browning issued a leadoff walk to Vandal catcher Jon Buenting, but again, Browning got Vandals to hit into two routine outs sandwiched around a strikeout of Pennington.
It was three up, three down for Mabank in the bottom of the second.
In the top of the third, Vandal shortstop Zach Harrison got a leadoff single, but was picked off by Panther first baseman David Taylor to end the scoring threat.
Van committed their only error in the bottom of the third to allow Panther second baseman Garrett Hill aboard, but Hill was stranded when Shelton and Sullivan both hit into routine grounders.
Neither team mounted a scoring threat in the fourth inning, and neither team was able to capitalize on singles in the fifth inning.

Van put two runners on base in the top of the sixth, thanks to the third and fourth Panther errors, but Browning got Goode swinging to set up a potential suicide squeeze bunt situation.
The Vandals tried the squeeze with Buenting at bat, but Sullivan tagged Aaron out at the plate and Browning then caught Buenting looking to end the top of the sixth.

Again, it was three up, three down for Mabank in the bottom of the sixth, but the Panthers also took care of business in the top of the seventh by taking out all three Vandal batters.
Down to their last three outs, the Panthers got nowhere, as Groom tapped into a routine grounder and Dike got two strikeouts – Taylor swinging and Ryan Smith looking – to end the contest.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Mabank pinch runner Michael Tanner (9) breaks up a potential double play by Van second baseman Caleb Neill during the sixth inning of Van’s 2-0 playoff win over Mabank Friday.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Van pinch runner Damon Hightower (29) steals second base ahead of the cutoff throw to Mabank shortstop Mikey Shelton (2) during the second inning of Van’s 2-0 playoff victory.



Rueb, Groom named Mabank’s top athletes
Monitor Staff Reports
MABANK–Seniors Shadia Rueb and Mark Groom were named the top athletes at the annual Mabank Athletic Booster Club’s varsity all sports banquet Saturday.
Both Rueb and Groom were multi-sport standouts during their high school careers, each securing a first-team all-district selection in at least two different sports.
Of the 364 Mabank High School varsity athletes, 162 participated in two or more sports, and some participated in as many as five sports, outgoing booster club president Scott Tuley told the gathering at the Mabank Middle School cafetorium.
Tuley said next year’s motto will be “From the District to the State, That’s Where We’ll be in ’08.”
Athletic director and head coach Jimmy Cantrell said of the 18 MHS varsity sports teams – “for a 3A school, that’s a lot,” he added – 14 of them qualified for post-season play.
“That is a phenomenal accomplishment,” Cantrell said.
Near the end of the three-hour-plus banquet, Cantrell noted the old saying that “success breeds success.”
“Success also breeds longer banquets,” he told Tuley with a grin.
Courtney Howard Foundation spokesman Wayne Groom told the gathering the Foundation would be able to award 25 $500 scholarships in this second year, up from 17 awarded in the foundation’s first year.
Tuley told the group the Booster Club will be selecting new officers at its May 14 meeting at the Mabank Dairy Queen.
Next year’s officers will be headed by Gary Springer, whom Tuley recognized as the “Fan of the Year.”
Awards given out to athletes in individual sports are listed below:
Cheerleaders – Best Cheerleader Shae Johnson, Panther Spirit Award Brooke Holcomb.
Baseball – Panther Heart Award Mikey Shelton, Defensive Player of the Year Kolton Browning, Most Valuable Player Mark Groom.
Boys Basketball – Defensive Player of the Year and Playmaker of the Year Haydon Blair, Rebounder of the Year Kolton Browning, Sixth Man Award Mack Wintin, Fighting Heart Award Mark Groom, Co-MVPs Haydon Blair and Kolton Browning.
Girls Basketball – Offensive Player of the Year Shadia Rueb, Defensive Player of the Year Blaire Hyde, Most Improved Player Sam Goss, Lady Panther Award Chelsey Dillon, MVP Emily Tucker.
Cross Country – Girls MVP Jeanice Mojica, Boys MVP Augustin Garfias.
Boys Golf – Panther Pride Award Taylor Brown, Most Improved Player Jason Delong, MVP Chris Harper.
Girls Golf – Panther Pride Award Elyssa Knowles, Most Improved Player Lauren Slaton, MVP Sarah Bivins (third year in a row to be MVP).
Trainers – Taper of the Year Brittni Blair, Newcomer of the Year Carrie Burkhard, Girls MVP Morgan Savage, Boys MVP J.J. Shilling.
Girls Track – Panther Pride Award Chelsea Alldredge, Field Events MVP April Miller, Running Events MVP Chelsey Dillon.
Volleyball – Panther Heart Award entire team (11 of 14 players made Academic All-District), Defensive Player of the Year Peng Leav, Offensive Player of the Year Shadia Rueb, Most Improved Player Miranda Groom, MVP Kelsi Reynolds.
Girls Powerlifting – Most Improved Lifter Macey Thomas, Panther Heart Award Kelsi Busby, MVP Rusti Hendley.
Boys Powerlifting – Newcomer of the Year Dillon Bramblitt, Panther Heart Award J.R. Hudson, Outstanding Lifter Brandon Carrico, MVP Guillermo Mendieta.
Boys Soccer – Defensive Player of the Year Michael Balderas, Offensive Player of the Year Jeremy Lewis, Panther Heart Award Brandon Madding, MVP Hunter Morse.
Girls Soccer – Newcomer of the Year Hilary Noble, MVP Erin Mason.
Softball – Hitter of the Year Erin Mason, Utility Player of the Year Katie Cross, MVP Brandie Lander.
Girls Tennis – Newcomer of the Year Brooke Witkop, MVP Kelly Hitzfeld.
Boys Tennis – MVP James Sanders.
Boys Track – Panther Heart Award Augustin Garfias, Distance Runner Terrence Boyle, Sprint Runner Norman Brady, Field Events MVP Dwayne Hamilton, Running Events MVP Shane Burk.
Football – Outstanding Offensive Lineman Bo Atherton, Outstanding Wide Receiver Mikey Shelton, Outstanding Running Back Kolton Browning, Outstanding Offensive Player Chris Recio, Outstanding Defensive Lineman J.R. Hudson, Outstanding Linebacker Matt Skinner, Outstanding Defensive Back David Parry, Defensive MVP Joey Mendez, Fighting Heart Award Steven Sims and Bobby Gaddis, Panther Pride Award Zach Costlow and Shane Burk, Coaches’ Award offensive line, Manager of the Year Branden Madding, MVP Mark Groom.

Upcoming Games


May 10
KHS vs Pleasant Grove
Area Championship
(best of three series)
Game 1
6 p.m. Thursday (tonight)
@ Hallsville High School
Game 2
6 p.m. Friday, May 11
@ Hallsville High School
Game 3 (if necessary)
2 p.m. Saturday, May 12
@ Driller Field, Kilgore

Semi-Pro Football

May 12
Xtreme vs ET Outlawz
@ Brownsboro High School


May 11-12
State Track Meet
@ Austin