pushes Van Alstyne to third game
Panthers wrestle area baseball championship away
from plucky Yellowjackets
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer
FORNEY–Kemp’s Yellowjackets forced the mighty Van Alstyne Panthers to a
third game before bowing out of the state baseball playoffs in the area
championship round Saturday.
After losing the first game 16-3 in six innings last Thursday, the
’Jackets roared back with another late-game rally to defeat the Panthers
In the deciding game of the best-of-three series at Forney’s Jackrabbit
Stadium Saturday afternoon, the Panthers opened up an 11-2 lead in the
first two innings and went on to defeat the ’Jackets 12-2 in five
“The kids hit the ball hard, but right where they were,” Kemp coach
Randal Forguson said afterward. “That’s what we did in the first game.
“Last night, we got two (hits) back-to-back and got hot. We just
couldn’t put anything together today,” he added.
“I’m proud of these kids, with all the adversity they went through this
season,” Forguson said. “We were a couple of bounces away from being
right there in it.”
Strikeouts and pop-ups marked the ’Jackets attack in the opening game of
the series, which no one wanted to talk about.
Friday night’s game, however, may have been one of their best efforts of
the season – certainly Forguson thought so.
The ’Jackets opened a 1-0 lead in the first inning when sophomore third
baseman Nick Sallings lined a two-out double to right field to score
senior second baseman J.R. Frizzell.
Frizzell, batting second, hit a stand-up double to left center off
Panther starter Josh Bowers to get on base.
However, Sallings was stranded when sophomore shortstop Matt Carr flew
out to deep center.
The Panthers immediately threatened when a leadoff walk to junior Dustin
O’Brien was followed by an error (a wide throw to first) to put senior
catcher Shawn Ablett on base.
Kemp sophomore pitcher Mikie Scruggs then allowed his second walk to
load the bases with two outs, but he recovered, striking out junior
Chuck Hardwick looking to get out of the jam.
Kemp put together a three-run outburst in the top of the third, as
Frizzell singled to left, junior catcher Brett Kennedy walked, and
Sallings singled home Frizzell.
Matt Carr then singled home Kennedy, and Scruggs hit a sacrifice fly to
right to score Sallings.
In the fourth inning, the Panthers got back into the game, scoring four
runs on two hits and a Yellowjacket error, as well as two very
questionable balk calls against Scruggs, one of which allowed Panther
Adam Judd to score.
With the score tied at 4-4, both teams struggled in the fifth and sixth
The Panthers got out of the fifth with a double play involving an
interference call against Sallings at second that brought Forguson
across the field to argue with the umpire and got Kemp fans very upset.
The ’Jackets got out of the sixth when Kennedy made a painful-looking
tag against Panther Kyle Mounger at home, completing a double play
started when Panther Matt Ritchey popped up.
Kemp broke open the contest in the top of the seventh, batting
completely through the lineup against Panther reliever Jacob Hand.
Leadoff man Leif Skierski got things started with a double to left
field, followed by a ground-out by Frizzell and a walk by Kennedy.
Sallings scored Skierski with a single to left, and Matt Carr doubled to
center to score Kennedy.
Scruggs then hit to the left-center gap, winding up with a triple and
scoring both Sallings and Carr.
Josh Carr followed that with a stand-up double to the exact same spot,
scoring Scruggs, and senior Mike Haney moved Carr to third with a tap to
With two outs, the Panthers committed an error on a routine tap to
second by Oliver Lacour, which scored Josh Carr.
Skierski returned, and promptly singled to center, then stole second.
Another Panther error on the pickoff throw to second allowed Lacour to
A rattled Hand then walked Frizzell and Kennedy’s single down the
left-field line scored Skierski and moved Frizzell to third.
The streak ended when Sallings popped up to the catcher, leaving two
runners on base.
Van Alstyne couldn’t match the eight-run outburst in the bottom of the
seventh, although Scruggs did give up one run on a bases-loaded walk
with two outs before a routine grounder to second ended the game.
Saturday, the Panthers took charge from the opening pitch, as leadoff
man O’Brien singled off Skierski.
The Panthers then got a break in the form of an error on a routine
popup, and Clayton Maloy’s bases-clearing single gave them a quick 2-0
Another single and a passed ball set up Cole Whitaker’s bases-clearing
stand-up double to left, giving the Panthers a 4-0 lead.
Another error on a routine tap to short prompted a quick Kemp huddle,
but Whitaker scored on a passed ball before Skierski caught Dustin Pogue
looking for the first out.
Adam Judd tapped into a routine ground out, but Mounger’s stand-up
double scored Hardwick.
The Panthers still had two baserunners when Matt Ritchey’s fly to left
was caught by senior Juan MacKinnon to end the top of the first.
The ’Jackets came back with two runs in the bottom of the first, as
Kennedy’s shot over the 325 sign in left field scored Skierski, who had
Unfortunately, Kennedy’s home run proved to be the only scoring play of
the day for the ’Jackets, and the Panthers added five runs to their
total in the top of the second.
The Panther onslaught was aided by the third Kemp error, which set up a
two-run shot over the 364 sign in left center by Shawn Ablett.
The next three Panthers all singled, and Judd’s double to left scored
two runs, although Sallings was able to tag Pogue out at third.
Another single by Mounger scored Judd, and the damage was done.
Neither team threatened in either the third or fourth innings, but the
Panthers were able to add the decisive run in the top of the fifth when
Maloy (who tossed a three-hitter) hit a deep fly to right, scoring
That gave the Panthers the 10 runs needed to end the contest after five
innings, and the ’Jackets went quietly in the bottom of the fifth, with
two ground-outs, a walk, and a force out at second.
EHS athletes honored at fete
Monitor Staff Reports
EUSTACE–Two multi-sport senior standouts were named as the “Athletes of
the Year” during the annual Eustace High School Athletic Awards event.
A nearly standing-room-only crowd packed into the EHS gym for Monday
evening’s event, as coaches introduced athletes in each sport and handed
out tribute awards.
Megan Maltos and Kody Petillo were named the school’s top athletes.
Maltos has played every girls’ sport at Eustace High School, and also
plays flute in the band, while Petillo played football, basketball and
ran track for the district-winning Bulldogs.
Maltos “was a part of five district championships” during her high
school career, veteran girls coach Chuck Powers told the crowd, adding
“She’s a coach’s dream to coach.”
This past school year, Maltos ran cross country, played volleyball,
basketball and softball, was on the powerlifting team and also ran
track. She also was named homecoming queen last fall.
Petillo, who has already signed a national letter of intent to play
football for St. Ambrose College in Davinport, Iowa, was a first-team
all-district selection on both offense and defense for the Bulldog
football team, head coach and athletic director Brad Scoggin told the
In addition, Petillo also started on the basketball team and was a part
of the first varsity track team in school history to win a district
championship and go through the season undefeated.
“He’s done everything any of us coaches have asked him to do,” Scoggin
Maltos and Petillo posed for pictures in front of a display of trophies
and awards, and Scoggin noted all of those trophies and awards were
secured by EHS athletes during this past school year.
“Whoo! What a great year we’ve had this year,” Scoggin said.
The top performances of the year were turned in by the cross country and
At the start of the year, the boys and girls cross country teams both
won district championships for the fourth straight year. The boys and
girls both went on to win the regional championship for the second
Tanida Durnell won 10 of the 11 races the team competed in, the
In track, the girls had 14 qualify for regional competition and set two
new school records. Chelsea Truitt qualified for regional competition in
five different events.
The Bulldog boys track team, both varsity and junior varsity, went
through the season undefeated, and coach Denver Stone said he had not
been a part of that kind of accomplishment before.
As noted earlier, the Bulldogs made school history with the first
district track championship, winning eight of 17 events, setting new
school records in the 800 relay and 1600 relay, as well as the 200 meter
dash and 300 meter hurdles, qualifying 15 runners for the regional meet.
The Lady Bulldogs volleyball team were bidistrict champions and an area
Coaches handed out awards to athletes, opening with the cheerleaders.
Cheerleaders: Most Spirited Kelsi Robertson, Most Improved Rachel Cook,
3-Ds Candy Donaghue, Whitney Snow and Bethany Wood, Cheerleader of the
Year Melanie Scott.
Volleyball: Heart Award Brittney Ward, Setter of the Year Whitney Spain,
MVP Alyson Harlan.
Cross country: Boys MVP Joseph Calhoun, Girls MVP Tanida Durnell.
Football: Fighting Heart Award Jacob Skoda, Offensive Player of the Year
Daniel Frazier, Defensive Player of the Year Carson Handlin, MVP Kody
Girls Basketball: Lady Bulldog Dedication Megan Maltos, Bulldog Heart
Award Brittany Ward, MVPs Kendall Hailey and Brittany Bearden.
Boys Basketball: Most Improved Colton Walsh, Most Dedicated Robert
Bonner, MVP Miles Lytle.
Boys Powerlifting: Newcomer of the Year Zach Arambula, Fighting Heart
Award David Hamilton, MVP Josh Johnson.
Girls Powerlifting: Newcomer of the Year Janice Martin, MVP Vanessa
Girls Golf: MVPs Cortney Thomsen and Brittany Ward.
Boys Golf: no MVP named.
Softball: Defensive Player of the Year Jessica Buie and Megan Ott, Lady
Bulldog Heart Award Rachel Watson, Coach’s Award Vanessa Maltos, MVP
Baseball: Bulldog Heart Award Jacob Skoda and Robert Bonner, Outstanding
Hitter J.D. Oldham, MVP Jacob Renteria.
Girls Track: Lady Bulldog Heart Award Jessica Parker, Outstanding Runner
Tanida Durnell, MVP Chelsea Truitt.
Boys Track: Most Improved Michael Sapp, Newcomer of the Year Cameron
Coffey, MVP John Oliver.
Earlier, Booster Club president James Cox presented Danny Davis
Scholarships to Whitney Spain and J.D. Oldham, along with Booster Club
scholarships to Justin Smith, Timothy Miller, Kody Petillo, Jacob Skoda
and Daniel Frazier.
The first Courtney Howard Memorial Scholarships were presented to Laci
Goodrich, Jamie Haas, Crystal Morrison, Kody Petillo, Whitney Spain,
Brittney Ward, Kyle Roberts and Daniel Frazier.
Cox also introduced the Booster Club officers, vice president Tammy
Spain (who won the 4-wheeler auctioned off all year by the Booster
Club), secretary Karen Lytle, treasurer Melanie Oldham and
concessionaire Mechelle Nixon.
CC Christian Softball League
Saturday, May 20
7 a.m. Justice
Hillcrest Red vs CLC Frogs
7 a.m. Tommy Smith
Grace Extreme Impact vs CLC Flame Kickers
8 a.m. Justice
CLC Frogs vs CLC Flame Kickers
8 a.m. Tommy Smith
A Sinner’s Hope Baptist vs Hillcrest Red
9 a.m. Justice
A Sinner’s Hope Baptist vs FBC Kemp
9 a.m. Tommy Smith
10 a.m. Justice
CC Bible Bearers of Light vs FBC Mabank Puddle Monkeys
10 a.m. Tommy Smith
FBC Eustace Disciples vs Prairieville Illustrated
11 a.m. Justice
FBC Mabank Puddle Monkeys vs Prairieville Illustrated
11 a.m. Tommy Smith
FBC Eustace Disciples vs Hillcrest Blue
FBC-GBC Halos vs CLC Crushers
noon Tommy Smith
Hillcrest Blue vs FBC Mabank Sea Donkeys
1 p.m. Justice
FBC-GBC Halos vs St. Jude Saints
1 p.m. Tommy Smith
CLC Crushers vs Prairieville Armadillos
2 p.m. Justice
Prairieville Armadillos vs St. Jude Saints
2 p.m. Tommy Smith
3 p.m. Justice
Providence Baptist vs Legendary Baptist
3 p.m. Tommy Smith
Calvary Jesus Freaks vs CC Church of God
4 p.m. Justice
CC Church of God vs Providence Baptist
4 p.m. Tommy Smith
Legendary Baptist vs Calvary Jesus Freaks
First team listed is home team