Weatherford Democrat

December 31, 2012

Year in Review — A look back at Parker County sports in 2011

Staff Writer
sports@weatherforddemocrat.com

WEATHERFORD —  

Editor's Note: This is the final of a five-part series looking back at the notable events of 2011 for Parker County sports.

 

SEPTEMBER

Sept. 4 - The Weatherford Roos, after a successful start to the season, had hoped to keep their momentum on track Friday, taking the field against neighboring rival Aledo. Unfortunately, there happened to be a train on the track — and the train, in this instance the Bearcats, was still a bit angry from being derailed the week before.

After four carries, spanning three possessions, Aledo’s Johnathan Gray had chewed  up 172 yards of Kangaroo Stadium turf, putting two touchdowns on the scoreboard. The Roos fought gamely for the balance of the contest, but Aledo’s mission prevailed as they won the non-district match 50-7.

Sept. 9 - The top junior college baseball players from New Mexico and Texas competed in the annual Fuddruckers Junior College All-Star Weekend at Baylor Ballpark.

Representing Weatherford College were Peter Cuomo and Brandon Vinyard, who participated in the prestigious event. Cuomo was a sophomore shortstop from Leander, and Vinyard was a sophomore outfielder from Euless Trinity.

Sept. 11 - In a defensive battle, where Millsap was defending, among other things,  Homecoming Night, the Bulldogs were able to score an early touchdown while shutting down the opponent’s offense to secure a 7-0 win over the DeLeon Bearcats in a non-district game.

Running back Cody Savage punched in a first-quarter TD for the Bulldogs, the only scoring Millsap would need on the night. Led by Nick Davila’s 14 tackles, the Millsap defense also forced three turnovers, recovering a fumble and recording picks by Russell Turner and Chris Valdez.

Sept. 11 - The hype of the Class 4A rematch between the Aledo Bearcats and the Lake Travis Cavaliers preceded itself, with tickets for Friday’s game selling out days before the actual contest.

With a tough loss already under their belts to Stephenville two weeks ago, the Bearcats looked to move forward, but only succeeded in doing so for the first half of Friday’s game, falling to the Cavaliers, 62-35.

Sept. 16 - Even with a separate seating section for honored Brock football supporters, the home-side stands were filled to capacity and many more fans were lined around the track at Brock Junior High Thursday, as the Eagles’ seventh and eighth-grade teams kicked off their inaugural gridiron season. Brock played host to the Dublin Lions, who sent their B-teams to face the Eagles. 

Brock fans’ anticipation of success was satisfied, with very little wait time after the seventh grade took the field. Return man Trent Patino took the opening kickoff the distance for a touchdown, foreshadowing the dominance the Eagles would display — in both contests. After covering a Dublin fumble, the Eagles’ first play from scrimmage also netted a score, with Patino again crossing the goal line in a 17-yard scamper, and Brock was well on their way to a 44-0 program-opening win.

 

OCTOBER

Oct. 1 - Sara Williamson, Will Taylor, 1953 Lady Roos volleyball team and Rod Newberry are inducted to Weatherford Athletic Hall of Fame at the Jerry Durant Auditorium,

Oct. 2 - Friday night’s final score between district and county rivals the Aledo Bearcats and the Springtown Porcupines looked more like one of the hooping variety than football, as the Bearcats defeated Springtown, 83-21, on Homecoming Night.

Oct. 9 - Weatherford High School senior Keegan Moore competed in the Granbury High School Golf Tournament at Harbor Lakes, shooting rounds of 77 and 76 to finish fourth in a field of 73 golfers. Moore was just a single stroke short of a tie for second place.

Oct. 12 - Millsap quarterback Paden Ross was nominated for the 2011 High School Rudy Awards. Ross, who had cystic fibrosis, was nominated by his mother.

“Hero is not a word any would use to describe him,” she wrote in her nomination letter. “But to those of us whose life he has touched – it would be the only word I can think of.” 

Oct. 14 - The Weatherford College rodeo team had its best outing of the young season at the Vernon College Rodeo. The men’s team took third place overall with 293 points, with strong performances in bull riding, team roping and calf roping.

Oct. 14 - NFL Hall of Famer and former Dallas Cowboy Rayfield Wright made a surprise visit to Ikard Elementary second grade teacher Autumn Fincher’s classroom. While there, he met with Fincher and engaged himself with every student in the classroom, answering numerous questions, allowing the students to try on one of his Super Bowl rings, shaking hands, and showing off his size 14 shoes and large “Big Cat” hands.

Oct. 23 - Weatherford College’s Bob McKinley geared up to coach both the women’s and men’s basketball teams in the upcoming season.

McKinley, who had coached the Lady Coyotes to much success over three-plus decades, assumed the role of Coyotes coach after Dave Donnelly left following last season.

“It’ll be a full day,” McKinley said with a laugh. “But I have always welcomed a challenge.”

Oct. 26 - The Tison junior high eighth-grade girls volleyball A-team, coached by Danielle Rodrique, won second place at the Weatherford Shirley Hall Tournament.

Oct. 26 - The Peaster Lady Hounds seventh-grade A-team protected home court, taking first place in the Peaster Tournament on Saturday.

Oct. 28 - For the second straight weekend, the Weatherford College women’s rodeo team won a title in dominating fashion. The team, comprised of Riley Greene, Cierra Kunesh, Brooke Sully and Savannah Todd, compiled a total of 450 points to win the Texas Tech University women’s team title. WC was 215 points ahead of second-place Texas Tech.

Oct. 30 - Aledo’s Johnathan Gray received a bid to participate in the Underarmour All-American Bowl all-star game. The Underarmour All-American Bowl was held at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Oct. 30 - It may have taken more time than they wanted, but the Springtown Porcupines fought to earn their first win of the season, beating Byron Nelson in emphatic fashion, 53-27.

“We beat a playoff team,” Springtown head coach Brad Turner said. “It may seem like a small thing, but that 0-10 record was looking really bad.”

 

NOVEMBER

Nov. 8 - After cruising past FW Western Hills in straight games to open postseason play, the Aledo Ladycats beat Cleburne in a Class 4A, Region I, Area round playoff game in Joshua.

The Lady Jackets offered up scrappy opposition, but Aledo prevailed in four games, 25-16, 21-25, 25-21, 25-14. 

Nov. 6 - With a bye in the opening round, the Lady Hounds disposed of Prairiland in Area-round play, beating the Lady Pats in four games. 

Nov. 6 - The Poolville volleyball team met Memphis to decided the Area-round champion, with the Lady Monarchs taking the wind out of the Lady Cyclones in a 3-game sweep.

Nov. 9 - Both went undefeated en route to their district titles, both had dominated thus far in their playoffs runs and both entered the regional semi-final rounds to embark on final tests before heading to the state tournament.

In Class 2A, Region II play, the Brock Lady Eagles bested district mate Peaster Lady Greyhounds at Aledo High School, winning in three games, 25-17, 25-19, and a hotly contested third game, 27-25. 

Nov. 9 - After placing first in the District 13-1A meet, the Poolville Monarchs varsity boys cross country team missed a trip to the state meet by just 11 points at the regional meet in Arlington. Sophomore Alex Rodriguez earned a spot at the state meet with a 7th-place showing. The boys’ varsity claimed its eighth-straight district title, with Rodriguez topping the field.

Nov. 10 - Family, friends, coaches and other well-wishers gathered at Brock High School to celebrate with Brock senior Amy Edwards, as she signed a letter-of-intent to attend and play volleyball for Lubbock Christian University.

Nov. 11 - For a third consecutive year, the Brock Eagles’ distance boys toed the start line at the UIL Class 2A Cross Country State Championship meet, run in Round Rock.

The team earned the trip via a third-place finish at the Region II meet in Arlington, earning the regional trip with a top finish in the District 10-2A meet in Millsap.

Nov. 13 - WHS senior golfer Keegan Moore, a 4-year contributor to the Roos golf team, signed to tee it up for the University of North Texas in the fall. Moore inked a national letter-of-intent, to attend and play golf at North Texas in Denton.

Nov. 13 - Staying close to family and friends tipped the scales to TCU for Brock senior Kamy Cole, who signed a national letter of commitment to attend and play basketball at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth.

Nov. 13 - The Brock Lady Eagles and the Aledo Ladycats experienced a bit of unpleasant deja vu on Friday, as they returned to their respective regional semifinals in the state volleyball playoffs, but fell to their opponents to end postseason play.

Nov. 13 - Aledo’s offense took to the air, and did it well, with quarterback Matt Bishop, who finished with 380 yards passing and four touchdowns in the playoff against Dunbar. The Bearcats won the Class 4A, Division II, Bi-district match, 59-10. 

Nov. 15 - The Aledo Ladycats experienced a bit of unpleasant deja vu, as they returned to McMurray University in Abilene to compete in the Class 4A, Region I semifinal round in the state volleyball playoffs. In the same round the previous year, the Ladycats faced Canyon Randall’s Lady Raiders, and fell to the District 3-4A team in five games — same as last year.

After dropping the opening game of the match, 14-25, the Ladycats came roaring back to take the next two games in close matches, 25-20, 25-20. Losing some all-important momentum in the fourth stanza, Aledo was forced to the fifth-game tiebreaker after taking a loss in Game 4, 17-25. 

The Ladycats failed to regain the momentum it had built up in the second and third games, as Randall went on a run to finish the last game, 9-15.

Nov. 15 - The Weatherford Academy of Korean Martial Arts had members of the white team participate in international taekwondo championships, bringing home 12 gold medals, six silver medals and five bronze medals.

Nov. 18 - Weatherford senior Keegan Moore who took first place at the Mansfield Shootout. Also competing for Weatherford were Tina Setti, Katy Swan and Allison Cox. Moore carded a 77 to top the overall field at the tourney.

Nov. 25 - With each step, the Weatherford College softball program made history, with an entry being the conclusion of its first fall schedule.

“It felt really good to be able to finally get on the field,” said head coach Dottie Cupp. “All the girls were super excited to start practice. It’s always exciting to start practice in the fall, but it is really special being part of the beginning of this program.”

Nov. 27 - Aledo running back Johnathan Gray broke loose for touchdown runs of 75 and 55 yards in the second quarter, at Grande Communications Stadium in Midland. The Bearcats earned another match with Stephenville, beating Canyon Randall, 42-14.

 

DECEMBER

Dec. 4 - The Aledo defense was much more intimidating to Stephenville than the rainy weather at Don Floyd Stadium in Midlothian. The Bearcats kept the Jackets’ running back Aiavion Edwards in check throughout the contest, resulting in a 33-0 Class 4A, Div.II, Region I championship for Aledo.

Dec. 6 - Aledo senior running back Johnathan Gray collected another honor, this time as the Gatorade® Texas Football Player of the Year. Gray’s selection automatically qualified him as a finalist for the national award, to be announced later this month.

Dec. 8 - Johnathan Gray received a special phone call from New York Jets running back LaDainian Tomlinson, as Gray was informed he was the 2011 Gatorade Corporation’s National Football Player of the Year. Gray was also among a group of five local football players who were nominees for the 2011 Landry Award.

Dec. 9 - The Weatherford College women’s basketball team moved up two spots, to No. 8, in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division I poll.

WC finished the fall semester with a 69-62 win over perennial powerhouse Midland College at the Betty Jo Crumm Graber Athletic Center.

Dec. 11 - At its wildest and woolliest at Mesquite Memorial Stadium, the Aledo Bearcats vs. Corsicana Tigers Class 4A, Division II state semifinal football match produced four touchdowns in 59 seconds, in game-clock time. Unfortunately for the Tigers, three of the scores were provided by Aledo, as the Bearcats lit up the scoreboard with 33 points in the third quarter en route to a 68-28 win.

Dec. 18 - It took nearly three and a half quarters, but Aledo running back Johnathan Gray finally got into the end zone in the Class 4A, Division II State Football Championship. The TD was not only notable, but quite timely for the Bearcats, who won the state title over Manvel, 49-28, at Cowboy Stadium in Arlington. The championship marked the third-straight for Aledo, who beat Brenham two years ago and LaMarque in last year’s title match. 

Dec. 23 - Springtown 8th-grade quarterback Landry Turner was selected to play in the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl in San Antonio, whose players are drawn from all over the United States. Landry’s final numbers on the 2011 football season were argument enough for his inclusion in the all-star venue, and propelled the Porcupines to an undefeated record on the season.

Turner led Pojo to a 9-0 record on the strength of a 65 percent passing completion ratio, connecting on 85 passes with 131 attempts.