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Top KHS athletes honored at banquet
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

KEMP–More than two dozen Kemp High School student athletes were honored Monday night during the annual Fall Sports Banquet, the first such awards ceremony held at the new high school.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Kemp High School student athletes winning top awards at the annual Fall Sports Banquet show their plaques following the assembly in the new school auditorium Monday. Players receiving academic all-district and academic all-state honors were given special recognition by coaches.

Following a chicken and pasta dinner catered by Seasons Restaurant of Mabank, players, coaches and parents filed into the new school auditorium for the awards portion of the evening’s festivities.
Kemp Athletic Booster Club president Robert Emfinger told the gathering the club has spent more than $25,000 on sports equipment across the high school and junior high campuses since July.
Students making academic all-district teams (maintaining a 90 or above grade average throughout the season) were given special recognition throughout the ceremony.
In cross-country, Brianna McCarty was noted as being named academic all-district.
Volleyball coach and girls coordinator Peggy Swierc was particularly proud to announce the Lady Yellowjackets were the only District 14-3A team to have every player on the roster named academic all-district.
Four players – Kayliegh Martin, Kylie Goswick, Hannah Carpenter and Kimmie Gorka – were named academic all-state, having maintained a grade average of 96 or above throughout the season, Swierc announced.
Three football players – Ryan Emfinger, Jeff Goldman and Wesley Kerr – were also named academic all-district, head coach and athletic director Greg Anderson announced.
Anderson introduced all the coaches, saying he considered this staff the best he’s ever had.
During the awards ceremonies, coaches introduced freshman and junior varsity players first, and they remained on stage while the varsity players were introduced.
Cross country coach Sally Ross introduced KHS runners, who participated in seven meets prior to the district meet in Eustace.
Caitline Garcia was named the Most Improved Runner, while McCarty and Garrett Haney were named the Outstanding Runners for the season.
Kayla Collum received the cross country Heart & Hustle Award.
Swierc announced Martin and Lacy Pettigrew were the winners of the volleyball Fighting Heart Award, while Heather Henderson was named the Most Improved Player.
Amber Brewer was named the Most Consistent Server, hitting 94 percent of her attempts during the season, while Sharda Bettis was named the Blocker of the Year.
Shelbie Wright and Goswick were named the Hitters of the Year, while Carpenter and Amanda White were named Passers of the Year.
Gorka was named the Best All-Around player, while Amanda Lawrence (the team’s only first-team all-district selection) was named the Most Valuable Player.
In somewhat of a surprise, the Lady Yellowjacket Award went to junior varsity player Shannon Shipp, who never missed a practice, Swierc noted.
In football, Anderson said the season record was not what the team had hoped, but noted. “This is probably the most enjoyable group of guys I’ve ever worked with.”
The team suffered through some of the toughest losses one could imagine – falling to district runner-up Van 3-0 in double overtime and losing to the third-place team, Eustace, on the road by just one point, 21-20, Anderson said.
“This group never stopped fighting,” he pointed out.
Senior quarterback Jeremy Quick was named the outstanding offensive back/receiver, while senior Terrence Sistrunk was named the outstanding offensive lineman.
Senior running back Cris Murray, who scored three first-play touchdowns in the first four games, but battled injury throughout the district schedule, was named the Offensive Player of the Year.
Lance Roberts was named the outstanding defensive lineman, while Goldman – who had five interceptions and three fumble recoveries – was named the outstanding defensive back.
Blake Murray was named the outstanding linebacker, while junior linebacker Johnny Kilgore was named the Defensive Player of the Year, Anderson announced.
Senior running back/safety Wesley Kerr received the Yellowjacket Award for his dedication and high level of play, while senior Zach Allison was named the Most Valuable Player.


Upcoming games

Girls basketball

Dec. 3-5
MHS @ Spring Hill tourn.
KHS @ Scurry-Rosser tourn.
EHS hosts tournament

Dec. 8
MHS @ Van
KHS vs Malakoff
EHS idle

Dec. 11
MHS vs Rowlett

Dec. 10-12
KHS @ Venus tourn.
EHS @ Fruitvale tourn.

Dec. 15
MHS @ Lancaster*
KHS vs Italy
EHS vs Cross Roads

Dec. 18
MHS vs West Mesquite*

Dec. 19
KHS @ Lindale

Dec. 21
KHS vs Miller Grove

Dec. 28-30
MHS @ Kaufman tourn.
KHS @ Gatesville tourn.
EHS @ Brownsboro tourn.
(*District contest)

Boys basketball

Dec. 3-5
MHS-Cedar Creek Shoot-out
KHS @ Quinlan Ford tourn.
EHS @ Scurry-Rosser tourn.

Dec. 8
MHS vs Sabine
KHS vs Scurry-Rosser
EHS vs Frost

Dec. 10-12
KHS @ ET Shoot-Out
EHS @ Frankston tourn.

Dec. 11
MHS @ Richardson Pierce

Dec. 15
MHS @ Wills Point
KHS @ Palestine
EHS vs Grand Saline

Dec. 17-19
MHS @ Sabine tourn.
KHS @ Athens tourn.
EHS @ Grand Saline tourn.

Dec. 18
KHS vs Fairfield

Dec. 21
KHS vs Miller Grove

Dec. 28-29
MHS @ Wagstaff Classic
KHS @ Kaufman tourn.

Dec. 29
EHS @ Fruitvale


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