Gilmer vs Hallsville

Hallsville’s Baylie Perkins makes a move to the basket for Hallsville during a game with Gilmer in Bobcat Gymansium.

Hallsville’s Baylie Perkins will continue her academic and athletic career at one of the top NCCAA Division II schools in the nation after signing a national letter-of-intent with Arlington Baptist University.

Perkins earned second team all-district honors on the basketball court for the Ladycats as a junior and senior. She averaged 7.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.8 assists while coming away with 40 steals during her senior season.

Hallsville advanced to the Class 5A playoffs her senior season, falling in the opening round to Lufkin (58-34).

“She’s a gym rat,” Ladycat head coach Holly Long said of Perkins. “She’s one of those kids that if something isn’t going right or something is off about her game, she’s there after practice working on it.”

Perkins led the team in deflections this past season, something Long said often goes unnoticed in the stats.

“She’s tenacious, and she always seems to get her hands on the ball and that led to several steals,” Long said. “She’s just a kid that bought into what we’re trying to do here. She’s scrappy and tenacious and always trying to get better.”

Arlington Baptist has won seven straight Association of Christian College Athletics (ACCA) national titles. The Patriots compete in the NCCAA Southwest Region with Southwestern Adventist, Ozark Christian, Champion Christian, Kansas Christian, Randall University and Dallas Christian.

The team finished 23-3 this past season, winning the Southwest Regional Tournament and then capturing the ACCA National Championship by defeating Carolina Christian (86-70), Dallas Christian (105-54) and Champion Christian (100-96).

The Patriots later advanced to the championship game of the NCCAA DII National Tournament, defeating Ozark Christian and Grace Christian before falling to Champion Christian (87-81).

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Follow Jack Stallard on Twitter: @lnjsports

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.