Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Sports

February 7, 2014

Morgan: A look back at coaching days

Corsicana — I had plans to write a column on last Sunday’s big game. No, not the Super Bowl, the Puppy Bowl. However, I picked up this morning’s paper and saw where Coach Prevost’s girls' basketball team has made the playoffs.

Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men, don’t you.

Of course, I was forced to go on Facebook and correct Sports Editor Mike Phillips. He wrote  that it was the first time the girls had ventured into the playoffs since 1991. That’s just not the case. I realize that Mike was probably writing columns about wind surfing in those days as he sunned on the beaches of Florida. However, I would have thought he’d probably heard all about us back then.

The last venture into the playoffs for the CHS Lady Tigers was in February of 1993. We were state ranked that year, and district champions.

In bi-district, we beat perennial ‘90s powerhouse Lindale at the Wagstaff gym at Tyler Junior College.

The area game was at McKinney High School where we played Paris North Lamar.

The ’93 team was led by six seniors. I had Lisa Brown, De Dee Betts, Kendra Nathan, Terry Brooks, Fredia Wafer and Christina Holland.

In addition to a strong senior class, we had super sophomore Stephanie Elliott. For the six seniors, this was their third straight venture into the playoffs.

We lost that game by one point when North Lamar hit two free throws with one second left on the clock. I will never forget that game. I had no idea that it would be my last playoff game, much less the Lady Tigers’ last one for 21 years.

Well, it is memorable for that in addition to being the only game in my career where the Daily Sun Sports Editor got ejected from press row …. well, the scorer’s table. In order to be discreet, that sports editor shall remain nameless (you’re welcome, Raymond.)

I never write about CHS athletics. As a former coach, I refuse to be critical of high school kids and/or their coaches.

In this instance, however, I am more than excited to see a comeback of something I truly love: Corsicana High School girls’ basketball.

It was sad to see the sport fall into such a prolonged period of futility. Between 1981 and 1993, the Lady Tigers made the playoffs nine times. Most of that was in the era of district winners only advancing to the playoffs.

In two of the non-playoff seasons, we lost a trip to post season in season finales with a loss to Ennis which left us as the second place team sitting home.

At least four times in that era we were state ranked with a number three ranking as our all-time high. As fate would have it, that team was one of the few to miss the playoffs. Soon after that rating came out, we lost two star players. Erica Wynne spilled boiling water on her foot, and Roxanne Seay missed several games with a sprained knee    

I never write about any of that, but when I saw what this year’s team has accomplished I decided that the past was far enough behind us to bring it up without putting down the current bunch. It never seemed appropriate when the teams were struggling. Now that the Lady Tigers are back on the map, I thought it might be a good time to let them know that they are carrying on a worthy legacy.

I have never met Coach Prevost, but I can tell you that I am quite proud of him and what his team has done, especially after they lost their top player so early in the season. I am glad to see CHS coming back in girls’ basketball.

Everyone knows about the proud football tradition in Corsicana. I thought maybe the current Lady Tigers might like to know that they have a tradition to build on, even if there is a 20-year gap. Go get ‘em girls.

 

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