Basketball

LONGVIEW

Mascot: Lady Lobos

Coach: Clay Busby

District: 15-5A (Pine Tree, Hallsville, Marshall, Mount Pleasant, Sulphur Springs, Texas High)

2019-20 record: 14-17

Top returning players: Cree McLemore … Madison Pippins … Brayleigh Mitchell … Jakayla Morrow

Newcomers to watch: Catherine Arce … Ja’Kannen Horton … Tarah Lister … Elaija Hatley … Iyanna Taylor … Jilia Wilson … Jordan Writt

You can count on: “More familiarity with the system and effort will be great every night.” - Busby

Needs work: “We have to make a quick adjustment with the large overlap of the volleyball season this year. We won’t have many games to prepare for district with our full team.” - Busby

Did you know: Busby is 190-105 in his career … The Lady Lobos finished 5-7 in district play last season and lost a play-in game for the fourth playoff spot

PINE TREE

Mascot: Lady Pirates

Coach: Robin Herber

District: 15-5A (Longview, Hallsville, Marshall, Mount Pleasant, Sulphur Springs, Texas High)

Top returning players: Malaeka Wilson … D’Karia Woodard

You can count on: “We’ll defend and play yard.” - Herber

Needs work: “We need consistent scorers.” - Herber

HALLSVILLE

Mascot: Ladycats

Coach: Holly Long

District: 15-5A (Longview, Pine Tree, Marshall, Mount Pleasant, Sulphur Springs, Texas High)

Top returning players: Mallory Pyle … Laikyn Smith … Abbi Fischer … Catherine Warford

Newcomers to watch: Aubrey Marjason … MaKayla Menchue

You can count on: “We have eight returning varsity players with experience and good chemistry. We will bring defensive intensity to the court and play a fast-paced, up tempo game.” - Long

Needs work: “We are working toward controlling our aggression on defense so we can play smarter and keep teams from shooting bonus shots against us.” - Long

Did you know: The Ladycats went 9-5 in district play last season, losing to Royse City in the bi-district playoffs

MARSHALL

Mascot: Lady Mavericks

Coach: Eric Woods

Coach’s record: 11-18

District: 15-5A (Longview, Pine Tree, Hallsville, Mount Pleasant, Sulphur Springs, Texas High)

2019-20 record: 11-18

Top returning players: Katelynn Jones (8.1 points, 5 rebounds, 3.1 assists) … Jordan Terry (4.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.5 blocks) … Kamryn Turner (4.7 points, 6.5 rebounds) … Asia Smith (5.3 points, 3.7 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Serenity Jackson … Jakairi Blacknell … Diamond Smith

You can count on: “Consistent effort and high energy.” - Woods

Needs work: “Free throw shooting.” - Woods

TYLER

Mascot: Lady Lions

Coach: Amber Wiley

District: 16-5A (Huntsville, Jacksonville, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Whitehouse)

2019-20 record: 9-22

Top returning players: Kamora Jackson … Ellyse Daye … Kierstyn Ross

Newcomer to watch: A’Niya Hartsfield

You can count on: “Turaround on the defensive end and smooth transition in offensive play.” - Wiley

Needs work: “Placing the correct pieces of the puzzle together.” - Wiley

SPRING HILL

Mascot: Lady Panthers

Coach: Dee Lewis

District: 16-4A (Henderson, Kilgore, Bullard, Lindale, Cumberland Academy, Chapel Hill)

Top returning players: Peyton Borens … Kenzie Gee … Zailey McGee … Rachel Petree … Madison Schreiber

Newcomers to watch: Laila Thompson … Abby Caron … Erin Gregson … Janie Bradshaw … Carli Manasse … Brantley Coggins

You can count on: “Commitment. In spite of adversity on the girls side, these girls come every day with a winning attitude and show great determination when they hit the court.” - Lewis

Needs work: “We definitely want to do more offensively and shoot the ball a lot more, but everybody knows defense wins championships.” - Lewis

Did you know: Lewis, who will also coach the Spring Hill varsity boys, has a career record of 158-102 and a 16-14 record at Spring Hill … Lewis’ niece, Montana Harrison, will be the head coach at Carlisle this season. Spring Hill and Carlisle are scheduled to play each other at Spring Hill on Dec. 5

KILGORE

Mascot: Lady Bulldogs

Coach: Trushundra McGill

Coach’s record: 29-24

District: 16-4A (Spring Hill, Henderson, Bullard, Cumberland Academy, Lindale, Chapel Hill)

Top returning players: Miah Thomas (13.2 points, 7 rebounds, 2.4 steals, 1.1 assists) … Alexis “AT” Anderson … Skye Cotton

Newcomers to watch: Summer Hayden

You can count on: “Team chemistry and the love they all have for the game.” - McGill

Needs work: “Working the old/new girls into the new system I’m going to put in place.” - McGill

HENDERSON

Mascot: Lady Lions

Coach: Kristen LeShaw

District: 16-4A (Spring Hill, Kilgore, Bullard, Lindale, Cumberland Academy, Chapel Hill)

Top returning players: Sakaylon Roquemore … Taylor Helton … Breniya Harkless … Ty’esha Mosley

Newcomers to watch: Taylor Lybrand … Mikeya Washington

You can count on: “The girls will play together and be patient while plays develop.” - LeShaw

Needs work: “Seeing the court and positioning.” - LeShaw

Did you know: The Lady Lions return six players with varsity experience

BULLARD

Mascot: Lady Panthers

Coach: Barry Gill

District: 16-4A (Kilgore, Spring Hill, Henderson, Cumberland Academy, Lindale, Chapel Hill)

2019-20 record: 33-6

Top returning players: Bailey Smith … Stephanie King … Kelli Richmond … Jordy Martin … Beverly Howard

Newcomers to watch: Anna Turgeau … Jadyn Welch

You can count on: “Four-year starter Bailey Smith.” - Gill

Needs work: “We graduated five great seniors, so this team will look different and will need to gain experience.” - Gill

Did you know: Bullard has won at least 30 games for six straight seasons

LINDALE

Mascot: Lady Eagles

Coach: Daniel Devisscher

District: 16-4A (Kilgore, Spring Hill, Henderson, Bullard, Cumberland Academy, Chapel Hill)

2019-20 record: 14-20

Top returning players: Shelbi Steen (11.5 points, 8.1 rebounds) … Lily Chamberlain (8.1 points, 1.8 assists, 2.2 steals) … Kalaya Pierce (2.1 assists, 2.2 steals) … Brooke Everest (5.9 points, 2.9 steals, 1.7 assists) … Brenley Philen (4.4 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Makenna Burks … Maryley Keith

You can count on: “Always coming out and competiting.” - Devisscher

Needs work: “Finishing.” - Devisscher

Did you know: Lindale remolded/updated and now has an additional gymnasium at the high school campus for extra game space

CHAPEL HILL

Mascot: Lady Bulldogs

Coach: Jeremy Durham

District: 16-4A (Kilgore, Spring Hill, Henderson, Bullard, Cumberland Academy, Lindale)

2019-20 record: 32-7

Top returning players: Kentoya Woods

Newcomers to watch: Mekhayia Moore … Paris Miller … Allie Cooper

You can count on: “Depth. Experience.” Durham

Needs work: “Shooting and consistency.” - Durham

Did you know: Chapel Hill reached the regional semifinals last season … Woods has signed with Southeastern Oklahoma State University

CARTHAGE

Mascot: Lady Dawgs

Coach: Michael Johnson

District: 17-4A (Rusk, Palestine, Center, Hudson, Jasper)

2019-20 record: 18-14

Top returning players: Makhai Lewis (10 points, 12 rebounds) … Jakyra Roberts (8 points, 6 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Jakiya Jackson

You can count on: “Team speed.” - Johnson

Needs work: “Game experience. Very young team.” - Johnson

GILMER

Mascot: Lady Buckeyes

Coach: Mandi Simpson

District: 15-4A (Pittsburg, Pleasant Grove, North Lamar, Paris, Liberty-Eylau)

Top returning players: Haylee Jordan (17 points) … Madisyon Tate … Le Le Morton

You can count on: “Experience and playing hard.” - Simpson

Needs work: “Conditioning. Volleyball going deep, plus no tournaments. We need to get into basketball shape.” - Simpson

Did you know: Gilmer will be playing at a new gymnasium/high school this season

PITTSBURG

Mascot: Lady Pirates

Coach: John Chatham

District: 15-4A (Pleasant Grove, Paris, North Lamar, Liberty-Eylau)

2019-20 record: 17-15

Top returning players: Sanaa Hollins … Natalie Styles … Ta’Shanti Moss … Elyssia Lemelle … Kyleigh Posey

Newcomers to watch: Laila Rhymes

You can count on: “Enthusiasm. They are always wanting in the gym and have shown excitement for months.” - Chatham

Needs work: “We must develop a bench and supporting case.” - Chatham

Did you know: Chatham has a 104-87 career coaching record

VAN

Mascot: Lady Vandals

Coach: Warren Southers

District: 14-4A (Athens, Brownsboro, Canton, Mabank, Wills Point)

2019-20 record: 20-12

Top returning players: Skylar Savage (10 points, 9 rebounds) … Maci Jones (4 points, 2.4 rebounds) … Emma Lou Brown-Smith (3.4 points, 3.6 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Landry Jones … Jordan Ryan)

You can count on: “Team speed and post game.” - Southers

Needs work: “Guard play. Experience.” - Southers

Did you know: Southers has a career coaching record of 473-342. Last season was his first at Van

WHITE OAK

Mascot: Ladynecks

Coach: Desiree Hutchins-Boyett

District: 15-3A (Daingerfield, New Diana, Ore City, Sabine, Gladewater, Hughes Springs)

2019-20 record: 21-12

Top returning players: Renee Cook … Alysa Hall … Payton Palmer

Newcomers to watch: Anna Iske … Lexi palmer … Whitni Rayson

You can count on: “Good team chemistry, effort and toughness.” – Hutchins-Boyett

Needs work: “Offensive consistency as a team and handling those pressure situations as a team.” – Hutchins-Boyett

Did you know: The Ladynecks fell in the bi-district round of the playoffs to Hughes Springs last season.

SABINE

Mascot: Lady Cardinals

Coach: Sara Cantrell

District: 15-3A (White Oak, Gladewater, Daingerfield, Hughes Springs, Ore City, New Diana)

2019-20 record: 22-10

Top returning players: Blaire Kaufman (14 points, 4 rebounds) ... Hailey Davis (4 points, 2 rebounds) ... Mercedes Willett (5 points, 10 rebounds) ... Callie Sparks ... Ally Gresham ... Maddie Furrh

Newcomers to watch: Claudia Simmons ... Addy Gresham

You can count on: "The Lady Cardinals will always play hard." - Cantrell

Needs work: "The Lady Cardinals will need to get the reps to get experience playing together." - Cantrell

Did you know: Cantrell has a 101-85 career coaching record, including a 75-51 mark at Sabine

GLADEWATER

Mascot: Lady Bears

Coach: Jermaine Lewis

District: 15-3A (Daingerfield, New Diana, Sabine, Hughes Springs, Ore City, White Oak)

2019-20 record: 12-16

Top returning players: Hai’leigh Oliver (9.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.3 steals, 1.4 assists) … Ebony Pipkin (11.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.6 steals) … Alexis Boyd (2.3 points, 2.4 rebounds, 1.3 blocks) … Sydney Spurlock (3.4 points, 2.1 rebounds, 1.7 steals)

Newcomers to watch: Calice Henderson

You can count on: “Playing hard each night.” - Lewis

Needs work: “Defense and communication.” - Lewis

Did you know: Lewis has a 108-103 career coaching record … Oliver was a first-team all-district performer, and Pipkin was the district’s Newcomer of the Year last season

NEW DIANA

Mascot: Lady Eagles

Coach: Ryan Herring

District: 15-3A (Daingerfield, Gladewater, Sabine, Hughes Springs, Ore City, White Oak)

2019-20 record: 6-19

Top returning players: Callie Click … Asia Newsome … Skielar Foreman … Katherine Yount … Sarah Yount … Kamrin Woodall … Ashley Orona

You can count on: “We are going to play hard, play together and pressure the ball.” - Herring

Needs work: “The girls are adjusting to a new coach, so there will be growing pains and a learning curve, but the girls are working really hard to learn fast and do things right.” - Herring

Did you know: New Diana returns seven players from last year’s varsity squad

HUGHES SPRINGS

Mascot: Lady Mustangs

Coach: Phillip Neill

District: 15-3A (Daingerfield, Gladewater, New Diana, Sabine, Ore City, White Oak)

2019-20 record: 15-7

Top returning players: Adrianna Kennedy … Kylie McMillon … Sammantha Waller … Sanariya Davis

Newcomers to watch: Amaunni Craver … Karmen Searcy … Ariel Crowder … Kyleigh Wilson

You can count on: “We’ll play to the last buzzer. We look to outwork and out hustle everyone on the floor.” - McNeill

Needs work: “Our overall ball-handling and shooting needs to improve.” - McNeill

Did you know: The Lady Mustangs finished 8-6 in district play last season

DAINGERFIELD

Mascot: Lady Tigers

Coach: Marcus Latimore

District: 15-3A (Gladewater, Hughes Springs, New Diana, Ore City, Sabine, White Oak)

2019-20 record: 22-7

Top returning players: Genesis Allen … Diamond Jeter

Newcomers to watch: Sanaa Fields … Terry Gholston

You can count on: “Defensive pressure.” - Latimore

Needs work: “Building team chemistry in a rebuilding year.” - Latimore

Did you know: The Lady Tigers advanced to the regional quarterfinals last season

TATUM

Mascot: Lady Eagles

Coach: Patricia Nelson

District: 16-3A (Jefferson, Arp, Elysian Fields, Harleton, West Rusk, Troup, Waskom)

2019-20 record: 16-12

Top returning players: Kayla Jones … Trinity Edwards … Summer Dancy-Vasquez … Kaylei Stroud … Kerrigan Biggs

Newcomers to watch: TaKayla Bradley … Emma Wiley … Jade Moore-Simon … Brynlee Mims … Jourdan Sikorski

You can count on: “Speed, defense and experience.” - Nelson

Needs work: “Shooting.” - Nelson

Did you know: Nelson has a career coaching record of 451-132 and a district record of 177-31. At Tatum, she’s 371-97 and 144-20

JEFFERSON

Mascot: Lady Bulldogs

Coach: Mark Allen

District: 16-3A (Arp, Elysian Fields, Harleton, West Rusk, Tatum, Troup, Waskom)

2019-20 record: 15-13

Top returning players: “Tierrani Johnson (12 points, 5.5 rebounds) … Da’Navia Thomas (7 points, 3 assists) … JaKayla Rusk (4.5 points, 3 assists)

Newcomers to watch: Breanna Carter … NeNe Burns … Iyanna Barnett

You can count on: “This team will work hard and keep our tradition of basketball success going.” - Allen

Needs work: “Developing into a cohesive unit.” - Allen

Did you know: Allen has 535 coaching wins in his career

ELYSIAN FIELDS

Mascot: Lady Jackets

Coach: Crystal Mills

District: 16-3A (Jefferson, Arp, Harleton, West Rusk, Tatum, Troup, Waskom)

2019-20 record: 19-13

Top returning players: Christen Smith (9.6 points, 4.2 rebounds) … Maddison Edwards (5.8 points, 3.4 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Morgan Shaw … Karrigan Love

You can count on: “We’ll be defensively sound and very scrappy.” - Mills

Needs work: “Were going to be a young team, so we will have to work on our maturity and fundamentals.” - Mills

Did you know: Elysian Fields has made the playoffs each of the last 10 seasons … Mills’ sister is Elysian Fields head volleyball coach Keasa Bonds

WEST RUSK

Mascot: Lady Raiders

Coach: Cordelle Smith

District: 16-3A (Jefferson, Arp, Harleton, Tatum, Troup, Waskom)

Top returning players: Piper Morton … Jamie Casey … Stormie LeJeune

Newcomers to watch: Triniti Tatum … Shynise Smith

You can count on: “Effort. This group will play hard not matter the situation.” - Smith

Needs work: “Offensive identity. We lost our two top scorers from last season, and must find offensive production.” - Smith

Did you know: Smith is in his first season as a head coach

PAUL PEWITT

Mascot: Lady Brahmas

Coach: Steve Trussell

District: 14-3A (Atlana, DeKalb, Hooks, New Boston, Queen City, Redwater)

2019-20 record: 23-9

Top returning players: Mya Heath (14.4 points, 4.0 assists, 3.9 rebounds, 3.0 steals) … Sissy Jones (10.8 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.0 steals, 2.5 assists) … Calli Osmon (8.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, 2.7 steals, 1.7 blocks) … Dazha Cooper (4.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.0 steals) … Shawni Cooper (4.2 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.5 steals) … McKayla Jackson (3.1 points, 3.0 rebounds) … Jailyn Smith (6.4 points, 4.3 assists, 3.7 steals, 3.3 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Tamia Johnson … Tydrianna Key … Addison Perry … Lindsey Mackay … Tatiana Donaldson

You can count on: “Experience. We return our top seven players, and Heath, Jones and Osmon are all seniors who have been on varsity since they were freshme. Shooting, full-court defense, run and gun attack with emphasis on shooting the three.” - Trussell

Needs work: “Depth. We need girls to step up because of the style we play. Free throws. We shot 48% from the line last year.” - Trussell

Did you know: Trussell has a 97-83 career record, all at Paul Pewitt … The Lady Brahmas made 228 3-pointers last year. In the five previous seasons, Paul Pewitt made 289 triples

HARMONY

Mascot: Lady Eagles

Coach: Sheri Seahorn

District: 13-3A (Quitman, Mount Vernon, Mount Pleasant Chapel Hill, Winnsboro, Mineola, Winona)

Top returning players: Kinzee Settles … Jenci Seahorn

Newcomers to watch: Lanie Trimple … Lillie Jones

You can count on: “Heart. They will play with everything they have.” - Seahorn

Needs work: “Scoring.” - Seahorn

Did you know: Harmony lost in the area playoffs last season to Prairiland

UNION GROVE

Mascot: Lady Lions

Coach: J.B. Littlejohn

District: 21-2A (Hawkins, Overton, Beckville, Carlisle, Big Sandy)

2019-20 record: 25-8

Players to watch: Macey Alston (16.3 points, 6.6 rebounds, 3.1 steals) … Carleigh Judd (14.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 block) … Makena Littlejohn (7.2 points, 2.8 steals) … Macey Roberts (4 points, 6 rebounds, 2 blocks) … Gracie Winn … Kyler Littlejohn

You can count on: “Senior leadership will be tremendous with two returning starters being varsity starters the past two seasons and the othering being a starter the past three years. Our core is very experienced with solid basketball savvy.” - Littlejohn

Needs work: “The bench will be young and inexperienced at the varsity level. We will need to develop depth to give us a boost as our season progresses.” - Littlejohn

Did you know: Littlejohn has a career coaching record of 368-211, including a 135-35 mark in five seasons at Union Grove … The Lady Lions advanced to the regional quarterfinals last season … Uion Grove has five straight 25-win seasons and seven seasons in a row making the playoffs … Littlejohn has two daughters – senior Makena and sophomore Kyler – on the varsity, marking the third time in six years having a set of sisters on the varsity squad

BECKVILLE

Mascot: Ladycats

Coach: Amy English

District: 21-2A (Union Grove, Hawkins, Overton, Carlisle, Big Sandy)

2019-20 record: 16-15

Top returning players: Haley Straubie … Baylie Seegers … Hannah Sharpless … Reagan Greer … Amber Harris … McKinna Chamness

You can count on: “Great defense.” - English

Needs work: “Working the ball inside.” – English

Did you know: The Ladycats finished 7-5 in district play last season

LINDEN-KILDARE

Mascot: Lady Tigers

Coach: James Allen

District: 16-2A (Rivercrest, Clarksville, Detroit, Maud, McLeod, James Bowie

2019-20 record: 2-24

Top returning players: Angelyna Meggs … LaSonya Nard … Madison Ebarb … Sydney Hampton

Newcomers to watch: Hannah Brown … Madilyn Bynum … Kaycee Neville … Sophia Hampton … Ashtin Patterson … Rylee Burns … Greenlee Smith … Leah Brown

You can count on: “We will play from start to finish and we will not give up. We will play for one another.” - Allen

Needs work: “Getting to know one another and making sure we have team chemistry.” - Allen

MCLEOD

Mascot: Lady Longhorns

Coach: Casey Schubert

District: 16-2A (Rivercrest, Clarksville, Detroit, Maud, James Bowie, Linden-Kildare)

2019-20 record: 25-10

Top returning players: Kaitlyn Cross (12.2 points) … Sibbie Comer (11.2 points, 6.7 rebounds … Cary May (4.8 points) … Ella Lambeth (6.2 points, 3.8 rebounds) … Regan Johnson … Gracie Lance (8.3 points, 8 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Stormy Johnson … Rielyn Schubert … Kenslee Cross

You can count on: “We have four girls 5-10 or taller.” - Schubert

Needs work: “This is my second year in the program, so the girls are still learning and developing.” - Schubert

Did you know: McLeod does not play football or volleyball

CHRISTIAN HERITAGE

Mascot: Lady Sentinels

Coach: Todd Kaunitz

Top returning players: Makenna Kaunitz (23 points) … Hailey Beasley

Newcomers to watch: Campbell Laney … Mary White

You can count on: “We will play fast-paced basketball and will be a defensive driven team.” - Kaunitz

Needs work: “Our halfcourt offense is going to see some great improvement this year.” - Kaunitz

Did you know: Makenna Kaunitz was the district’s offensive MVP and a first team all-state player last year as a freshman

LONGVIEW HEAT

Coach: Brian Greer

2019-20 record: 24-9

Top returning players: Jaelyn Cleveland (11.8 points, 10.8 rebounds, 3.4 blocks) … Jenna Parker (6.2 points, 4 rebounds, 4 steals) … Jordan Parker (26 points, 6.8 rebounds, 6.4 steals, 122 made 3-pointers) … Madison Wright (4 rebounds)

Newcomers to watch: Brailey Brown … Abbey Gallant … Grace Lawrence … Laynie Walton … Aubrey Silverthorne

You can count on: “Quiet enthusiasm and selfless hard work in learning, playing and enjoying the game.” - Greer

Needs work: “Conditioning and endurance for the long haul.” - Greer

Did you know: Longview HEAT captured the NCHBC regional title and the TAIAO state championship last season

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JACK STALLARD

Sports editor

I've covered sports in East Texas since 1987, starting as a 21-year-old sports editor at the Kilgore News Herald before spending seven years at the Lufkin Daily News and the past 23 years at the Longview News-Journal.