Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Sports

January 30, 2013

Wills: Baby Estelle arrives just in time for Kilgore

Runnin’ Bulldogs coach has had busy week with big game looming

Corsicana — One of the biggest events in his life and one of the biggest games of the season qualify as making this an eventful week for Navarro basketball coach Johnny Estelle.

Jayden Estelle arrived three weeks early on Sunday, the first boy and the third child for Ana and Johnny Estelle. Jayden won’t be on the bench for Wednesday night’s huge game against No. 18 Kilgore.

Coach Estelle will be there though, continuing a hectic week that has included supporting his lovely wife through labor, feeding Jayden and running a few basketball practices.

“It’s been about 11 years,” Estelle said of welcoming a child into the world again, his fourth with a son Jevon who lives in Arizona. “It’s still the same. It’s like riding a bicycle.”

Jayden’s timing was perfect. The Runnin’ Bulldogs had an open date Saturday, so the showdown against the Rangers will be Navarro’s first game since a win last Wednesday at Bossier Parish.

Jayden was supposed to come on Feb. 12, the day before a home game against Panola. That would have really put the pressure on his father.

Coming Sunday allowed for Estelle to be at three practices and be there for his family. Young Jayden had the right idea.

 “He’s like our team, sometimes on offense we can’t wait,” Estelle said. “We have to shoot it up there. He’s home now. He’s healthy and we’re blessed.”

Estelle knows exactly what to expect from Kilgore, which won a controversial game last year at the Wolens Speciel Events Center. The Estelles weren’t exactly planning on the new member of the family.

“I didn’t think I would go through it again,” Estelle said. “But God always has a way of giving you what he wants.”

A gift from God, Estelle said.

“It’s amazing,” Estelle said. “I love kids. I’ve always loved kids. When Ana and I first got married I told her, ‘hey we’re going to have beautiful kids.’ The first one came and she’s drop-dead gorgeous. The second one came and she’s drop-dead gorgeous. And now I have a handsome son. No I’m just kidding. I’m very grateful.”

Estelle has leaned heavily on assistant coaches Eric Colbert and Brian Crawford, who ran the start of Wednesday’s practice so the family could get baby Jayden home.

Practice was spirited Wednesday. Intense. Just how Estelle wanted it to be when he arrived at the gym.

“For us we have a family atmosphere (with basketball),” Estelle said. “We have great assistant coaches that stepped in. I didn’t even have to ask them to do anything. We haven’t missed a beat. We’ll be ready for Kilgore.”

It’s the biggest game of the Region XIV season so far, East or South. Navarro somehow is unranked despite being 17-4 and winning 14 of 15 games. The Runnin’ Bulldogs are 9-1 in conference play.

Kilgore is 18-3 overall and second in conference with an 8-3 mark, putting them 1 1/2 games behind Navarro. A Runnin’ Bulldogs win would give Navarro a three-game lead in the region with eight games to play (Angelina is 7-4 and four others are 6-4).  

Don’t forget that this season an automatic berth to the national tournament is there for the regular-season champion.

“It is a big game,” Estelle said. “It has a lot of implications. But there’s still eight other conference games after it. It’s a big game being No. 1 and 2 in the conference.

“We’re playing at home. We have to have some great fan support. If we have great fan support they’ll be that little edge to push us over the top.”

Navarro has plenty of motivation, from the newest Estelle arriving to being snubbed in the poll again this week.

“It doesn’t surprise me,” Estelle said of not being ranked. “That’s just the way it is. I guess we’re not very good. We’ll just go with what everybody else says and prove everybody wrong hopefully.”

Harrison Hawkins, one of the Runnin’ Bulldogs’ point guards, said Estelle will be motivated to get a win for his new son.

“I know it’s more motivation for him,” Hawkins said. “Him being the head of this thing. It’s going to be more motivation for us. We want to get the little guy a win on the first day he’s here. We have to deliver.”

1
Text Only
Sports
  • GC Basketball/Baseball: Mildred's Connor Hill sees life clearly

    There was never any doubt for Connor Hill, never any question about what he would do or how he would do it.
    Sure, there was that meeting with his mother and father and talks with the doctor when he was 10, talks and meetings that came accompanied with worry and concern.
    But never from Connor.
    He just never dwelled on the fact he played sports with one eye. He didn't worry or talk about it when he was 10 and he never talked about it at Mildred High, where Hill emerged as a star on the basketball court and baseball diamond.

    April 18, 2014

  • Frost Lady Polar Bears Area Champions.jpg GC Track & Field: Roundup — Frost girls win area meet

    The Frost Lady Polar Bears made a shambles of their district track & field meet last week, scoring 206 points, and they were dominate again in the area meet Thursday, scoring 162 points to win the meet at Blooming Grove.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • RON MORGAN.jpg Morgan:The new endangered species

    Am I just that old, or have amateur athletics gone absolutely nuts these days? On second thought, don’t answer that unless it’s yes to the nuts part.
    High School and college basketball are on the verge of being totally ruined by AAU basketball. Top roundball prospects are identified by the junior high level if not earlier.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • GC Track & Field: Area meet Roundup

    Corsicana's Gilfillan wins 4A area pole vault title; Frost girls win 1A area team title, Frost boys finish second

    April 17, 2014

  • GC Baseball: Mildred falls to Riesel, 9-0, on the road

    Mildred managed a hit and struck out 12 times in a 9-0 loss on the road that could have given the Eagles some cushion in the 23-2A standings. They are now 5-6 with a game at league-leading Teague Tuesday.

    April 17, 2014

  • 4-18-14Roman.jpg CHS Soccer: Tigers boys and girls top off season with strong showing on All-District teams

    That tough and gutsy style of play sent both the boys and girls teams into the playoffs and on Thursday the Tigers were rewarded again for their fine seasons as two boys won special honors,four boys were named to the All-District first team and two girls earned first-team honors.
    Michael Roman, who did a little of everything — and did it well — was named the District 28-4A Utility Player of the Year, and sophomore defender Jesus Barreto was named the district's Newcomer of the Year.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-16-14Amessigns.jpg GC Basketball; Kerens' Ames signs with Cloud (Kan.) Community College

    There's nothing quite like signing day, and Taylor Ames was all smiles and beaming about her future Wednesday when she signed a letter-of-intent, accepting a basketball scholarship to Cloud County Community College in Kansas in front of family, friends and coaches at Kerens, where Ames leaves a legacy like no other.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-16-14NVSBMoerbe slides.jpg Navarro Softball: Bulldogs get ranked, split with Paris

    Minutes after Navarro split a doubleheader with Paris on Wednesday, Navarro softball Coach Jessica Karenke was told her Bulldogs had just been nationally ranked and are now No. 16 in the NJCAA national softball poll.
    She had no idea.
    And she didn't care.
    Karenke is worried about what happens on the diamond, and she had some concerns after Navarro made four errors in the second game that opened the door for Paris to pull off a 7-2 win after the Bulldogs and Ciara Luna controlled the first game with a 4-1 win.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • CallieDevinFCA.jpg GC: Mildred's O'Sullivan and Bland chosen to play in FCA All-Star games

    Mildred’s Devin O’Sullivan and Callie Bland have been selected to play in the FCA’s All-Star games on June 1.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-115-14CHSBBMinniear.jpg CHS Baseball: Lindale haunts Tigers again with critical 4-0 win

    Lindale has been poison to Corsicana all year.
    The Eagles won a bizarre game in Lindale to keep the Tigers out of the football playoffs and ruined the boys basketball season with two gut-wrenching wins in the final week of the season.
    They did it again Tuesday, beating the Tigers 4-0 at Price Field to take over second place in the District 16-4A race.
    Lindale (6-2) had one big inning to hand Corsicana (5-3) its second loss in a row.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

House Ads
AP Video
Twitter Updates