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Trinity Media Group, LLC 12330 E. 60th St. • Tulsa, OK 74146 All rights reserved. Publisher Austin Chadwick • Editorial Director Brad Heath • Director of Operations Rod Coulter Three Rivers Director Bill Huddleston • Oklahoma Sales Director Roscoe Migloire Associate Editor Cal Ross • SWOK Sponsorship Coordinator Marylynn Heath • Sales Executive Dan Rowlan Contributing Writers Bill Huddleston, Brad Heath, Kyle Kendrick, Cal Ross, Terrence Young, Derek Parker, Andee Beth Fitts, Michael Kinney Contributing Photographers Kyle Lomenick, Jim Tibbetts and Brad Heath, Vickie Tincher, Brett Rojo Contact Information Website: www.VYPESWOK.com • Phone: 918.495.1771 • Fax: 918.495.1787 VYPE is published monthly by Trinity Media Group, LLC. Reproductions in whole or in part without permission are prohibited.
6 | SWOK Fan Poll POY Who came out on top in the SWOK Football Fan Poll Player of the Year? A long list of great players competed for the title and we have the results.
Altus Basketball The Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs enter the 2016-17 season with high expectations as both teams return some talented players to the court.
8 | Warrior Hoops Anadarko is one of the more competitive teams in the state and both teams are looking to make this a memorable season.
15 | Duncan Demon Basketball The end of football season marks the beginning of basketball. The fans of Duncan High School basketball are ready for the Demons to take the court.
VYPESWOK.com – The FANS Speak Shelter Insurance Mr. Football Fan Poll Deontre Thomas – Mustang 34,331 votes Reese Leitao – Jenks 25,925 votes Brock Martin – Oologah 13,402 votes Justin Broiles – John Marshall 11,957 votes Reed Martin – Lincoln Christian 10,639 votes Kamren Curl – Muskogee 7,059 votes Shamari Brooks – Union 6,284 votes Creed Humphrey – Shawnee 6,138 votes Malcolm Rodriguez – Wagoner 3,641 votes Baehler Buol – Noble 2,061 votes Brandon George – Jones 481 votes R.T. Sherman – Carl Albert 480 votes Deontre Thomas won the fan poll and was named the Fan’s Choice Champion, while Union running back Shamari Brooks won the voting for the Shelter Insurance Mr. Football Award. Congrats to all the VYPE Top 100 nominees on a great season.
Each month VYPE Magazine will post fans polls specific to the Southwest Oklahoma region at www.vype.com/swoklahoma. These polls will feature athletes from the communities and schools in Southwest Oklahoma. Plus you can find the latest articles from VYPE Magazine, All-VYPE teams, rankings and more.
SWOK Top 100 Fan Favorite Male Basketball Poll Tanner Meraz – Elgin 21,386 votes Adrian Labrada – Anadarko 18,408 votes Hunter Palesano – Dickson 6,600 votes Andrew Espinosa – Snyder 4,672 votes Jake Lindsey – Lindsay 3,901 votes Jacob McClendon – Comanche 3,822 votes Jose Whatoname – Riverside 2,549 votes Jaxon Thomas – Weatherford 1,564 votes Drake Vittitow – Blanchard 1,254 votes Cade Shirley – Minco 1,140 votes
Most Outstanding Playoff Coaches Poll – Presented by Bank of Western Oklahoma Colt Allison - Hobart 43.99% (30,426 votes) Reade Box - Clinton 32.48% (22,465 votes) Woody Roof - Weatherford 4.6% (3,185 votes) John Inman - Lindsay 4.3% (2,973 votes) Joe Price - Plainview 4.29% (2,968 votes) Brad Ballard - Tuttle 3.74% (2,590 votes) Josh Newby - Ardmore 1.82% (1,260 votes) Jody Weber - Davis 1.56% (1,078 votes) Matt Brand - Alex 0.81% (560 votes)
SWOK Top 100 Fan Favorite Female Basketball Poll Deontre Thomas
Kennedy Berry - Granite (22,942 votes) Carly Richardson - Comanche (17,321 votes) Korie Allensworth - Empire (10,529 votes) Grace Merrifield - Elk City (10,140 votes) Shawndra Viola - Erick (8,352 votes) Shekinah Gilliam - Cyril (6,211 votes) Mariah Watson - Altus (4,944 votes) Kea Mays - Cyril (4,660 votes) Megan Brown - Cordell (4,008 votes) Gillian Snowder - Canute (3,276 votes) Alyssa Flowers - Erick (2,349 votes) Sydney Williams - Mountain View-Gotebo (2,012 votes) Jaeda Reed - Eisenhower (1,961 votes) Alexa Harvey - Weatherford (1,757 votes) Hannah Morris - Tuttle (1,520 votes)
Southwest Oklahoma Football Player of the Year Josh Garza JOSH GARZA – CYRIL FOOTBALL Photo by Terrence young Quarterback Josh Garza from Cyril High School is your Southwest Oklahoma Player of the Year. Garza led the Pirates this season to a 7-4 record in Class B and a trip to the playoffs. Garza had a great season as the team signal caller throwing for 2,418 yards on 112 completions with 34 touchdowns to only four interceptions. Garza was effective throwing and running the ball this season. He rushed for 710 yards on 87 carries and scored 15 touchdowns averaging 8.2 yards per carry. Head coach Trevor Knight said
Garza proved he’s deserving of being named player of the year.
“Josh is one of those kids that you root for. He’s great in the classroom and on the field. His work ethic is second to none, constantly trying to get better. Josh is the catalyst that makes our team go. He’s a great role model for our younger classes and I feel very fortunate to have him,” said Knight. Only a junior, Garza will return for his senior season to lead the Pirates into his final campaign as quarterback. Expect Garza and the rest of the Pirate nation to find their way back to the playoffs in 2017.
SOUTHWEST OKLAHOMA FOOTBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR POLL PRESENTED BY CARTER COUNTY DODGE Josh Garza – Cyril 55,457 votes Tucker Halstead – Minco 54,794 votes Gage Porter – Elk City 8,077 votes Chantz Scurry – Ardmore 3,536 votes Kobe Brewster – Plainview 3,085 votes Anthony Love – MacArthur 2,634 votes Spencer Boese – Corn Bible 720 votes Tucker Mora – Waurika 96 votes Tre Curry – Lawton 59 votes Dia Vonte Michael – Lawton 56 votes
Fan's Choice Southwest Oklahoma Player of the Month ELI PAUL – PLAINVIEW FOOTBALL Senior Eli Paul did it all for the Plainview Indians this season. As the teams leading rusher Paul ran for 2,369 yards on 245 carries and scored 32 touchdowns. He averaged 9.7 yards per carry and 157.9 a game. For his career Paul finishes with 3,368 yards and 53 touchdowns. Over his three years as a running back Paul averaged an amazing 7.8 yards per carry. This season he also added five receptions for 103 yards. On defense Paul recorded 25 tackles giving him a career total of 207. And on special teams Paul
handled the punting duties averaging 31.9 per kick.
Paul helped the Indians to the Class 3A state title game where they faced the Jones Longhorns. On their way to the finals the Indians defeated Anadarko, Douglass, Lincoln Christian and Cushing.
For his efforts on the field and a dedication to his team, Plainview High School running back is the Southwest Oklahoma Fan Poll Player of the Month. POLLING RESULTS
Eli Paul Eli Paul – Plainview 29,019 votes Shekinah Gilliam – Cyril 24,339 votes Kyle Jones – Anadarko 7,796 votes Maicie Brown – Weatherford 3,002 votes Berkley Price – Cordell 183 votes Tre Curry – Lawton 78 votes Jacey Henry – Turner 54 votes Other athletes receiving votes include Hunter Cleveland – Altus, Anthony Kemper – MacArthur, and Dace Granger – Anadarko.
ALL-VYPE SWOK Football Offense QB Gage Porter – Elk City RB Tre Curry – Lawton RB Tucker Mora – Waurika RB Trenton Bell - Duncan WR Austin Taylor – Lindsay WR Jayquan Lincoln – Lawton WR Dominick Neal – Lawton WR/TE Justin Billingsley - Duncan OL J.W. Morrow – Duncan OL Luak Tut – Merritt OL Hunter Anthony – Tuttle OL Dawson Henry – Mangum OL John Wright – Plainview Defense DL Tyreece Lott – Ardmore DL Kaieem Caesar – Cache DL Maverick McCaskill – Davis LB Preston Nunley – Marlow LB Nathan Williams – Blanchard LB Marcus Spencer – Lawton LB Trent Littlejohn – Minco DB Dia Vonte Michael – Lawton DB Jordan Roberts – Ardmore DB Josh Garza – Cyril DB Miles Davis – Lawton Specialists/Athletes K Landon Hamlin – Blanchard P Wyatt Bergner – Marlow ATH Kobe Brewster – Plainview ATH Zach Hanna – Lawton ATH Jayden Garcia – Cache ATH Dylan Coffman – Tuttle ATH Trey Eason – Anadarko ATH Ryan Terry – Weatherford
Honorable Mention QB Rhett Boles – Tuttle, QB RJ Fisher –
Eisenhower, RB Spencer Boese – Corn Bible, RB Tucker Halstead – Minco, RB Justin Walton – Lindsay, RB Chantz Scurry – Ardmore, RB Keith Taylor – Tuttle, WR Jamie Nance – Blanchard, OL/DL Zach AcostaClinton, DE Tony Garland – Cache, DL SirRyan Royal – MacArthur, LB Gunnar Harris – Hobart, LB Connor Webb – Davis, DB Andrew Yarbrough – Tuttle, K Grant Braught – Duncan, P Noah Taiese – Elgin, ATH Anthony Love – MacArthur, ATH Tito Jones – Altus
Shelby Riggs – Binger-Oney – P Toni Kelly – Empire – P Robyn Bales – Elk City – P Monica Munn – Minco – P Macy McAdoo – Tuttle – P Emily Ely – Velma-Alma – P Emilee Skipworth – Mt. View-Gotebo – P Bailey Bearce – Bray-Doyle – P Jordan Weese – Burns Flat-Dill City – P Hanna Beth – Plainview – P Janie Worthington – Carnegie – P Abbee Allison – Lindsay – P Lexi Duff – Ardmore – P Ceya Montoya – Grandfield – P
Kiley Baxter – Alex – C Peyton Sage – Binger-Oney – C Kerrigan Thorne – MacArthur – C Joanna Leon – Lookeba-Sickles – C Nikki Ray – Clinton – C Jacie Phillips – Hobart – C Emily Yanez – Mountain View-Gotebo – C Kylee Rice – Duke – C Rylee Keith – Plainview – C Kylee Sparks – Central Marlow – C Karley Kinder – Carnegie – C Carli Eubank – Amber-Pocasset – C Madisen Moore – Ardmore – C Shawnia Christensen – EC-Pernell – C
Randi Lee Troglin – Mt. View-Gotebo – 1B Sydney Simmons – Altus – 1B Blakely Dill – Duke – 1B Alyssa Pletcher – Lawton Ike – 1B Hartley Duke – Lindsay – 1B Emily Poindexter – Elgin – 1B Caity Sparlin – Ardmore – 1B Stephanie Cooper – Duncan – 2B Riley Bryson – Clinton – 2B Raegen Jackson – Amber-Pocasset – 2B
Brennae Hines – Alex – SS Tayah Allen – Duncan – SS Angelica Gonzalez Aponte – Lawton – SS Augusta Duty – Minco – SS Caycee Griffin – Healdton – SS Hannah Morris – Tuttle – SS Mikayla Wilson – Velma-Alma – SS Payton Szalaj – Sulphur – SS Kelsee Baker – Altus – SS Kyndalin Byrd – Bray-Doyle – SS Calebi Cusher – Duke – SS Sami Skelly – Plainview – SS Laylee Ramirez – Grandfield – SS
Destiny Spradlin – Burns Flat-Dill City – 3B Morgan Chavez – Ardmore – 3B Sabri Britton – Binger-Oney – OF Devyn Metcalf – Elk City – OF Sidney Patrick – Elk City – OF Skylar Morse – Minco – OF Sara Zukerman – MacArthur – OF Brooklyn Mason – Lone Grove – OF Kassidy Branam – Hobart – OF Ashley Turner – Cache – OF Brooklyn Minden – Central Marlow – OF Aleigha Lowe – Elgin – OF Bailey Sullivan – Empire – UTL Harley Smith – Elk City – UTL Rosie Ward – Cache – UTL
Dumonte Farrone – Lawton – 1B
Kobe Brewster JANUARY 2017
Wolverines Make 6AII Finals
Zack Hanna For the third year in a row the Lawton Wolverines and the Bixby Spartans meet in the 6A-II playoffs. Head coach Randy Breeze is very familiar with the Bixby Spartans. In 2014 the two teams met in the first Class 6A-II finals with the Spartans coming out on top, 2135. In 2015 the two cross-state rivals met in the first round of the playoffs and Bixby once again picked up the win. This season fans from both sides expected to see a familiar foe on the opposite side of the field, and that expectation was met when the two teams squared off on a wet, cold night at Yukon High School.
Lawton quarterback Zack Hanna wasted little time getting the Wolverines on the board. He completed an 11-yard pass to Jayquan Lincoln for the first score of the game, which he followed up with an interception return for a touchdown. Lincoln was on fire and it looked bad for the Spartans early.
Bixby’s Tucker Pawley would run one in from eight yards out to get Bixby on the board. Lawton’s Dominick Neal answered with a 30-yard reception from Hanna and after a failed 2-point conversion, Lawton was up 19-7 going into the second quarter. Both defenses took over in the second as each team tried to get the running game going. Pawley punched one in from two yards out, but Lawton’s Tre Curry answered with a two-yard touchdown run of his own. Lawton continued to miss extra points, but Jason Campbell for Bixby was hitting every kick. At the half the Spartans
trailed Lawton, 14-25.
The floodgates opened in the third and the Spartans posted 22 points and held the Wolverines to no score. Pawley added another TD, while Nic Swanson caught a 35-yard pass from Tanner Griffin. Lawton would answer with a big play from Neal in the fourth quarter. Hanna hit Neal on a 75-yard TD, but the two-point conversion failed. Campbell would add a 36-yard field goal and the Spartans would go on to win their third title in a row, 39-31. Lawton was seeking their fifth state football title in school history. The Wolverines knocked off No.1 Muskogee and Booker T. Washington to get to the finals. Lawton finished the 2016 season with a record of 8-5. Several key players return for Lawton including Jayquan Lincoln, Dominick Neal, Jaylik Gibson, Miles Davis and Marcus Spencer.
LHS HOME OF CHAMPIONS!
PHOTO - Courtesy of Mike Mazzo Photography
Congratulations Seniors! 8
USAO to induct longtime baseball coach into Athletic Hall of Fame By Justin Tinder, USAO Sports Information Director The University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma will induct longtime baseball coach L.J. Powell into the Drovers’ Athletic Hall of Fame Saturday, Jan. 14, 2017.
“USAO’s Athletic Hall of Fame honors those who’ve made a lasting impact on the university’s sports history,” said Athletic Director Brisco McPherson, a Hall of Fame member himself. “We are glad to welcome Coach Powell into the Hall of Fame Class of 2017. He is very deserving of this honor.” The USAO Athletic Hall of Fame was started in 1993 as a way to enshrine student-athletes, coaches, teams and contributors who have made a significant impact on the university and the athletic department. The Hall of Fame selection committee, comprised of USAO athletic staff and alumni, meets each fall to select candidates for induction. A total of 20 individuals and one team have been inducted thus far. As head coach of the USAO baseball team, Powell won 266 games through 12 seasons including a Red River Athletic Conference Championship and berth in the NAIA Regional Tournament. Powell took over the program in 1998 and built teams that were both nationally-competitive and admired by coaches and university administrators and faculty. Powell’s most successful season was his last, in 2009, when he shared head coaching duties with current Drover coach Mike Ross. USAO set a then school record, winning 37 games in the rugged Sooner Athletic Conference that year.
“Coach Mike Ross and family were a godsend in the summer of 1991 when I needed to be lifted up,” said Powell. “He is a loyal, dedicated cohort and friend. He runs the Drover program with integrity and of the highest caliber.” Powell, who already has eight hall of fames to his credit, said “being inducted into the USAO Athletic Hall of Fame is an extreme honor. Seeing the list of honorees from the past is very humbling because I know how hard they worked and how much USAO meant to them.”
“I’d like to give special thanks to President Feaver, Brisco McPherson, Bill Smith and the USAO family for their support. To the student-athletes for choosing the Drover nation to continue their education and play the great game of baseball,” he said. Powell, a native of Mountain View, spent more than 50 years of his life as a coach and teacher in the state of Oklahoma. A 1954 graduate of Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Powells taught and coached at Anadarko and Frederick before finding a home in Chickasha. He spent 38 years at Chickasha High School where he served as baseball coach, softball coach and dean of students at different times throughout his career. The baseball facility at Chickasha High school is named after him.
While Powell’s records and honors are lengthy and richly deserved, he takes the most pride in the impact he made with his players, many of whom still stay in touch with him to this day. He said he still gets
nearly 100 Christmas cards each year from his former students.
“The relationships that came through my role as a coach and teacher are some of the most valuable ones I have,” Powell said. “People have always made me feel welcome in their lives. I enjoy hearing stories and staying in touch with my former players as they continue to grow professionally and personally in their adult lives.”
university of science and ar ts of oklahoma
usao.edu | chickasha, OK | (405) 574-1357 twit ter | facebook | instagram JANUARY 2017
TOP 100 SOUTHWEST OKLAHOMA VYPE TOP 100 presented by Shelter Insurance includes 5 of Oklahoma’s best players from the SWOK area and will compete to earn the title Shelter Insurance Mr. and Miss Basketball Oklahoma. Follow them @VYPEOK on twitter and keep up with their season at #VYPETop100 Courtney Morgan Fort Cobb-Broxton Lady Mustangs Jr. 5-6 Guard @Courtne39217940 Did you know: Morgan is a three-time AllTournament selectee and has numerous academic awards to her credit. College: Morgan is undecided and keeping her options open. Quote: “I’m a versatile player and I love the game of basketball.”
Cameron Hines Fort Cobb-Broxton Mustangs Sr. 5-10 Point Guard @Hines1302 Did you know: Hines was the state tournament MVP last season. College: Hines has committed to East Central University. Quote: “I can see the court and create shots for my teammates. The Big House is the toughest place to play because of the pressure.”
Wesley McClendon Comanche Indians Sr. 6-4 Power Forward @Wesbird11 Did you know: McClendon also plays golf, football and baseball. College: McClendon has interest from several schools. Quote: “The biggest influence in my life is my mom. She pushes me to succeed through anything.”
Misty Dossey Comanche Lady Indians Jr. 6-5 Center @MistyDossey Did you know: Dossey would like to study physical therapy in college. College: Dossey is being recruited by several schools including Tulsa, Oklahoma State and Iowa State. Quote: “Something people may not know about me is I’m in archery and my favorite player is Wilt Chamberlin.”
Greyden Steinmetz Fort Cobb-Broxton Mustangs Sr. 6-4 Shooting Guard @greyden1993 Did you know: Steinmetz is known for his ability to attack the rim. College: Steinmetz has interest from NSU, John Brown and Redlands. Quote: “Look for us to three-peat. We’re a scrappy, hard working team.”
What You Need To Know CHICKASHA’S BROCK HENDERSON MAKING MOST OF SENIOR SEASON Brock Henderson may be a star on the baseball diamond, but on the court he’s an ice cold shooter. Henderson has 1,498 career points coming into the season. The 6-foot-2 guard has great range and can hit from any spot on the floor. Last season the team won 20 games, but with potentially five seniors starting for head coach Wes Pulliam, Chickasha could certainly make some noise this year. LINDSAY COACH DAN CHAPMAN HITS 20 YEAR MARK
Lindsay head coach Dan Chapman enters his 20th season as head coach after taking his team to a 19-7 season a year ago and with three returning starters to the court Lindsay may be a team in contention.
“I am expecting to have a strong defensive club. I am concerned about scoring, Lindsey and Stelzig should lead the way on offense,” said coach Chapman.
Last season Lindsey averaged 9.8 points with 2.0 rebounds per game, while Stelzig averaged 7.3 points and 5.5 rebounds. At 6-foot-6 Stelzig can play forward or center and could be a force this season.
VARNUM GIRLS SET SIGHTS ON STATE TOURNAMENT
The Varnum girls fell just short of making the state tournament last season after going 22-8. Head coach Jon M. Hadley will look to leaders like Abby Gosa (5-7, Sr.) and Christian Wind (5-3, Jr.) to get things started. Gosa averaged 6.7 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.6 steals, while Wind accounted for 7.4 points, 3.6 assists and 2.4 steals. Also look for Madyson Kinsey (5-8, So.), a sharp shooter averaging 8.1 points per game. Junior forward/center Ryleigh Lane (6-0) can dominate the boards and get the transition game started. Brooklyn Biffle (6-0, So.) is another player coach Hadley is expecting big things from this season. Overall the ladies at Varnum appear to be on the right track to making that tournament run.
COMANCHE FEATURES PAIR OF VYPE TOP 100 PLAYERS The community of Comanche is buzzing around the announcement that Comanche High School players Wesley
McClendon and Misty Dossey were both named to the VYPE Top 100 list this season. McClendon had a great junior campaign averaging 15.4 points, 11.2 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game, while Dossey averaged 18 points, 12 rebounds and 7.0 blocks. The VYPE Top 100 consists of the 50 best boys and 50 best girls basketball players in the state. Both McClendon and Dossey are in the running for Mr. and Miss Basketball Oklahoma. Be sure and vote for them at VYPEOK.com. DUKE LADY TIGERS; YOUNG & HUNGRY
In his second season has head coach, Rick Wilson takes a young, but hungry squad into the season led by sophomore guard Hannah Brown. The 5-foot-9 shooter averaged 9.7 points with 3.0 rebounds per contest last season. Amber Bustos (5-9) will slide from guard to the post showing her athleticism. Bustos averaged 10.5 points and 4.2 rebounds a game. Both players started as freshmen. Senior Katie Jones (5-10) saw action last season, but is expected to be a factor in every game this year. Her 4.6 points and 2.7 rebounds are crucial for the teams overall success. Also look for Mattie McAlister (5-6, So.) and Calebl Crusher (5-8, Fr.) this season. Both players will see significant time on the floor. Kaylee Keck (5-8, Fr.) and Kylee Rice (5-7, Fr.) provide much needed depth. JANUARY 2017
LAWTON WOLVERINES has a big impact on the overall success of the program. Diavonta Michaels (5-10, Sr.) is the second guard on the roster that brings a unique set of skills to the floor. Michaels averaged 8.2 points, 2.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game. Mark Berry (6-4, So.) brings good size to the floor and the ability to score from his forward position. Berry accounted for 7.8 points and grabbed 2.8 rebounds a game last season. Guards Brad Bullock (5-11, Sr.) and Darryle Alexander (5-8, Sr.) are quick and move well without the ball. Add Tristan Smith (6-2, Jr.) into the rotation and you have a team that can run the floor with accurate
shooters that play hard on the defensive end. Ashawnti Hunter (6-5, Fr.) and Kevan Chatten (6-8, Jr.) are developing into solid big men in the paint. “We want to be better competitors,” said coach Wiley. And with this roster the Wolverines should have no trouble competing on a nightly basis. Assistant coaches include Lt. Col. Nate Johnson and Reggie Smith.
BOYS Todd Millwee 15-16 Record: 22-5 Head coach Todd Millwee takes over after being an assistant for 10 years so the players know his style and he knows the players. Rod Fisher is still an assistant on staff and Josh Wall was added as well. Romio Harvey (6-3, Sr.) is the guard/forward combo player that has the athleticism to take over games. Last season Harvey averaged 10 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.0 steals per game. Great numbers from Harvey. Point guard RJ Fisher (6-1, Jr.) could be one of the more underrated guards in the class. Last season he averaged 10 points, 7.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists. Fisher tough to stop offensively and is relentless on defense. Mookie Douglas (5-11, Sr.) contributed 6.0 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists a game, while guard DeShawn Becton (5-11, Sr.) went for two points and two steals last year. Kinyon Parker (6-2, Jr.) and DeShaun Cruse (6-4, Jr.) figure into the attack this season as both
players are pushing for playing time. Also look for Kevin Farmer (6-3, Jr.), Tariq Perkins (6-0, Sr.), Kenneth Graham (5-10, Jr.), Shane Kirkham (6-1, Jr.), Kerson Scruggs (6-2, Jr.) and Antonio Gordon (6-6, So.) to add depth to the bench and give coach Millwee quality minutes when called upon. “We have a lot of unselfish players who and can penetrate, shoot and finish strong at the rim. Defensively we plan to switch up defenses and use our quickness to create turnovers,” coach Millwee said.
athleticism and size to the backcourt. Coupled with guard Marquetta Rogers (5-8, Jr.), the pair create problems for smaller teams. Kelsi Thomas (5-7, Sr.) may be the lone senior in the starting lineup and her leadership will go a long ways this season. Quache Matthews (5-3, So.) and Yulianis Pagan (5-6, So.) are two young sophomores with big potential. Their development will only help this team as the season moves forward. Senior guard Mariah Ellis (5-2) could be one of the first players off the bench with guard Jada Laster (58). Both bring tenacity and a desire to win to the court. Anslee Bridges (5-9, Jr.) as excellent size, while Destinee Rush (5-5, Jr.) has good speed. Also look for Juliette Harvey (5-5, Jr.) and Milayka McKenzie (5-4, So.) to contribute to the overall success of the team this season. “We are very young and inexperienced. Our goal this year is to compete each and every game. We want to improve each and every day,” coach Wall said.
BOYS Marco Gagliardi 15-16 Record: 10-16 Long time coach Kevin Harrington has left the program after 25 years of leading MacArthur basketball. Coach Marco Gagliardi takes over the program and has promoted 9th grade coach Anthony Redd to be an assistant. Coach Gagliardi said the offense will emphasize movement without the ball and defensively they will play man-to-man most of time. “Great attitude, great effort, timeliness and coachability is what we talk about every day,” coach Gagliardi said. Senior center Michael Simpson has a massive presence in the paint at 6-foot-8 and over 200-pounds. Simpson averaged 10 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game last season. Look for the offense to center around the big man as the Highlanders look to create shots off movement. Anthony Love (6-5, Sr.) gets his return to the court after suffering an ACL injury
during football season last year. Love is expected to make a big impact from his forward position giving coach Gagliardi two tough and athletic post players. Donavan Foster (5-10, Sr.) and JaSean Carter (5-10, Jr.) will start at the guard spots. Foster averaged 8.0 points and 2.0 assists last season. Also look for Seph Reece (5-9, Fr.), Toney Woods (5-8, Jr.), Antron Graham (6-1, Jr.), Isaiah Burton (6-1, Jr.), Sam Hilliard (6-3, Sr.) and Christian Short (6-4, Sr.).
(5-5, Jr.) is another shooter coach Garza will lean on this season. Cobb averaged 10.2 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists a game last year. Sydney Gunter (5-10, So.) could become the post player the teams needs in the paint. Gunter averaged nearly seven points and three rebounds a year ago and could see those numbers increase. Senior guard Neseana Carter (5-5) has the quickness to distrupt opposing offenses and score baskets in transition and off turnovers. Carter averaged 6.4 points with 4.7 rebounds. “Excited with four returning starters back and lots of players on the bench with experience! You can’t teach experience,” coach Garza said. MacKenzie Mims (5-9, Jr.) and Devin Miles (5-9, Sr.) are expected to make an impact this season. Look for the Lady Highlanders to press defensively and force turnovers for easy buckets.
BOYS Michael Donnelly 15-16 Record: 12-12
Eric Wiley 15-16 Record: 11-13 Head coach Eric Wiley enters his 6th season has front man for the Lawton Wolverines and returns two starters from last years team that went 11-13. One of those starters is the dynamic guard, Tre Vaughn (6-0, Sr.). Vaughn averaged 18.2 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals per contest. His production on both ends of the court
LAWTON IKE EAGLES
LAWTON MAC HIGHLANDERS
GIRLS Daniel Wall 15-16 Record: 8-17 The Lady Eagles will start a young, but prepared team this season as coach Daniel Wall looks to get the girls program back on track. Jaeda Reed (6-1, Jr.) averaged 10 points, 9.8 rebounds and 3.0 blocks last season. The offense will probably run through her so look for Reed to become a consistent double-double player. Point guard Delecia Brown (5-8, Jr.) adds
MacArthur Lady Highlanders GIRLS Danny Garza 15-16 Record: 14-13 Starting his 12th season at Lawton MacArthur head coach Danny Garza returns several keys players to the court this season. Forward Lauren Henry (5-7, Sr.) is the leading scorer averaging 15.4 points, 2.4 rebounds, 1.0 assist and 1.0 steal per contest. Henry is a potent scorer and a player that can take over a game. Destine Cobb
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BOYS Ryan Green 15-16 Record: 14-12 Outlook: The Owls return three starters to the lineup as head coach Ryan Green looks to continue improving on the 14 win season from a year ago. Leading the way is guard Tanner Meraz (5-10, Sr.) who averaged 12 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists as a junior. Post player Greydon Buhlig (6-6, Sr.) is backed to patrol the paint for the Owls. Buhlig averaged 5.8 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. Dillan Landers (6-3, Sr.) will start at forward where his 5.2 points and 4.0 rebounds per contest could increase with a larger role on the offensive end of the court. Elias Walker (6-0, Sr.) will start at guard where his quickness with the ball can set up open shots for his teammates. At 6-foot-5, Chase DeFillippo figures into the game playing forward or center with Connor Slater (6-5, So.) coming into the game at guard. Other players to watch include Dylan Burk (6-0, So.), Yannik Gruenwald (6-6, So.), Tanner Harris (6-0, Sr.) and Nate Marrero (5-8, Jr.).
GIRLS Brett Tahah 15-16 Record: 23-7 Outlook: A totally new coaching staff takes over for the Lady Owls with Brett Tahah serving as head coach. “I am excited for the season. This group of girls work hard all the time and give 100% when they are on the floor,” coach Tahah said. Selena McDonald (6-3, Sr.) averaged 11.7 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game last season. McDonald can dominate the paint and help the offense get fast break points off rebounds. Kailah Ballon (6-0, So.) gets the nod at forward where she averaged 3.6 points and 3.1 rebounds as a freshman. Izzy Cummins (5-10, So.) is the shortest player in the starting lineup. Cummins avaergaed 2.9 points as a freshman last year. Christina Jenkins (62, Jr.) and Rebecca Anderson (5-11, Jr.) shore up the forward position while Emily Poindexter (6-2, Sr.) will see time at center. On the bench coach Tahah is loaded with guards capable of contributing to the teams overall success. Gabby Cummins (5-10, So.), Melanie Whitewold (5-5, Sr.), Mona’ Adams (5-5, Jr.), April Proctor (5-4, Fr.) and Cassandra Colong (5-4, Fr.).
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ALTUS BULLDOGS By Michael Kinney Altus Bulldogs Nathan Pennypacker Outlook: Altus boys coach Nathan Pennypacker doesn’t look too far into the future. He is not into predicting how far his team can go or how good they can be. In fact, Pennypacker only has really only one expectation for his Bulldogs as they go through the 2016-17 season. “One of the goals we try to have is to just to get better each day,” Pennypacker said. “From every play that we’re in, we need to strive for excellence and keep moving forward.” Wanting to see daily improvements from his team seems to be the foundation Altus has been its season on. Through four games, that has been the example the team has put forth. Altus began the year with a crushing 63-35 loss to Elgin. But they then bounced back to earn wins over Duncan and Weatherford. The Dogs closed out 2016 with a loss to Burkburnett, Texas. “We’re growing every game that we play,” Pennypacker said. “Getting used to each other, getting a feel for everyone. We’ve got some new youngsters this year, got some freshman playing for us. Once we figure everybody out and where they are going to be, we’re going to be alright.” Pennypacker considered his squad a mix of young and older players. They return two starts off last years squad in seniors Johnny Esquivell and Destin Palama. Pennypacker will also be counting on freshman such as Devian Ford and Hunter Webb and
sophomore Carson Pickett. Veteran Trevor Williams and Keggan Shive will be asked to stepped on and off the court. “The big thing is alignment. My senior guards know what I want,” Pennypacker said. “They are the guys that tell the rest of the team how to go about that. It’s just getting better each and every day that we have an opportunity. We all know that is goes quickly.” The Bulldogs will face No. 18 Elk City Jan. 3 before heading to the Chickasha Tournaments Jan. 5. The coaching staff wants to see the same attitude they began the season with. “I just want to get better from the day before. That’s a concept we keep talking about,” Pennypacker said. “The kids are believing in it. They’re seeing results from their hard work. So it’s just getting people bought in to the process. Getting players to not only believe in what we’re doing, but believe in themselves.”
Altus Lady Bulldogs Staci Terbush Outlook: The start to the 2016-17 season has perplexed Altus girls coach Staci Terbush. In the first seven games she has seen her 13th ranked Lady Bulldogs play at impressive levels. But she has also left games in bewilderment. “The games that we lost, we should have won,” Terbush said. “A lot of it was due to poor shooting percentage. I felt like the games we have lost, we should have won. If we had been shooting better. We just ended up beating ourselves is what happened.” Altus headed into the holiday break sporting a 4-3 record. One of those victories was a 48-40
win over No. 19 Lawton MacArthur. However, it’s the three defeats that stand out to Terbush. The Lady Bulldogs lost by four to No. 9 Elgin and six to No. Weatherford. As a veteran coach, Terbush knows losing is part of the game. However, certain ways really get under skin. “Any coach hates when you beat yourself,” Terbush, “It’s alright if a team is better than you and they beat you. But when you beat yourself it’s kind of disappointing.” Yet, Terbush also knew coming into the year that Altus could face some up and down moments throughout the season. “We are still pretty young. I do have three seniors. But other than that, we’re still pretty young,” Terbush said. “I knew we were still in the rebuilding phase. I think with more time throughout the season, I think we will be OK.” The Altus coaching staff will be looking for the three seniors to play big and lead the way this year. They include forward Mariah Watson, who is coming off an ACL injury, point guard Kiandra Knight, and post Jimmie Dollins. Terbush is expecting the team to be much more consistent when they return from Christmas break. “They’re energetic and the work hard on defense. I think they just lack a little bit of confidence in shooting,” Terbush said. “But hopefully throughout the season, with more games under our belt, the confidence thing will come. Ofcourse, when a team is not shooting well, it’s hard to do anything else well. They are hard workers, I’ll give them that. “
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Character is a combination of qualities that distinguishes one person or group from another. VYPE celebrates achievements of local high school athletes by presenting the monthly “Character Counts Award.” By Derek Parker
Gage Gomez Altus High School
Throughout his years at Altus High School, senior Gage Gomez has impacted his school in a major way. Gomez is a member of the varsity wrestling team, and continues to help lead the team to success in the Class 5A division. He currently wrestles in the 126-pound weight division. Individually Gomez finished second in the state in both 2015, and 2016, and looks to place high yet again in his final push as an Altus Bulldog. To Gomez, character is something that everyone sees in him. It’s how he represents his teammates, his coaches, and his school. Representing Altus High School is something he prides himself on. Representing Altus goes further than just competing for Gomez. It factors into how he carries himself as a student, athlete, and even citizen. Gomez believes character is doing the right thing even when you’re not in the spotlight. He described character as the qualities that his school, opposing schools, and even the crowd see in him, on and off the mat. He believes character is something
his coaches have taught him throughout the years. To Gomez, good sportsmanship is everything. He believes there should always be a mutual respect between opponents. Respect is something that he is extremely high on. Gomez’s teammates are more than just teammates to him. “They’re like my family, and they’ll always have my back.” Gomez said. When he’s not practicing, and competing at tournaments, Gomez spends his time coaching the little wrestlers program. After his own practices, Gomez spends time helping younger kids to develop their wrestling skills. Teaching younger athletes good sportsmanship and character is just one of many great actions Gomez has shown throughout his years at Altus. Gomez’s character has left a lasting impression at Altus, and will continue through his teammates and the little wrestlers he has led. Character goes beyond wrestling for him. Gomez loves competing for Altus, and hopes to continue competing at the next level. After his senior year, Gomez wants to continue wrestling in college.
Merritt Lady Oilers Jeff Fletcher 2015-16 Record: 13-12
Outlook: The Lady Oilers return four players with starting experience to the court this season and head coach Jeff Fletcher is excited to get this group rolling. Kensley Krien (5-8, Sr.) will start at forward giving Merritt a solid performer in the paint. Krien should average around 4.0 points and 4.0 rebounds a game. Shooter Brooklyn Parker (5-5, Sr.) averaged 11 points and 3.0 rebounds a year ago and was named to the All-Conference team. Parker can hit from any spot on the floor and locks it down on the defensive end of the court. Another senior looking to leave her mark is Ashlee Carr (5-8). Carr will start opposite Krien at forward giving coach Fletcher two excellent rebounders under the rim. Last season Carr averaged 4.0 points and 4.0 rebounds per contest. Mikiah Carnes (5-7, Jr.) did not play last season after suffering a knee injury, but is expected to make an impact this year. Brystal Van Buren (5-3, Jr.) and Shayla Morris (5-4, Jr.) are two guards that have the skill set to run the offense. Van
Buren will start at point guard. “We have a lot of experience returning plus a good freshman class coming in. This will be by far our deepest team,” Brooklyn Parker-Vaught Kenzie Mong said coach Fletcher. That depth 6.1 assists from his point guard spot. Luak Tut (6includes Sara Vaught (5-10, Jr.), Ravin Ray (5-5, 1, Sr.) accounted for 13.4 points and 8.9 rebounds Jr.), Kelsey Ferris (5-7, Jr.), Tiffany Price (5-8, Jr.), as the teams go-to post player a year ago. Look McKenzie Mong (5-5, So.) and Klaudia Porter for Tut to continue that type of performance (5-7, So.). this season. Brett Custer (5-10, Sr.) joins Mong at guard where his 6.2 points per game will Merritt Oilers certainly add to the teams overall success. Dennis Husband “We have a chance to be a really good team by 2015-16 Record: 19-9 the end of the season if we have good health and strong work ethic and a servant’s attitude,” said Outlook: After coming within one game of 20 coach Husband. wins last season head coach Dennis Husband Junior Tyler Fowler (6-2) and sophomore Dalen and the Oilers are focused on turning this season Smith (6-2) will start at forward giving the Oilers into one the Merritt fans will not soon forget. two excellent scorers and defenders in the paint. Five starters return to the court including Tanner Last season Fowler averaged 8.1 points and 3.9 Mong (5-11, Sr.) who averaged 15.9 points and rebounds a game. Rylan Jones (6-0, Sr.) should see time as well playing a combo guard/ forward position. Other players to look for include Bryce Cobb (5-10, Sr.), Sam Williams (6-1, Jr.), Adam Gibbons (6-3, So.), Cole Carnes (5-10, So.), Trevor Damron (61, So.) and Brendan Rodriguez (6-1, Sr.).
Photos By Chris Copeland Photography
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ELK CITY ELKS Elk City Lady Elks Tim Ellison 2015-16 Record: 14-12
Outlook: Despite only returning two starters from last years squad, head coach Tim Ellison does have a deep bench and could mean several players will see significant time this season. Senior guard Grace Merrifield (5-5) returns as one of the top scorers on the team. Last season she averaged 6.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per contest. On the defensive end of the floor she grabbed 3.0 steals. Merrifield will have some help in the post with Kelcee Millican (5-9, Sr.) starting at center. Millican averaged 5.0 points and 4.0 rebounds a game as a junior. Senior forward Bridget DeLeon (5-5) is quick with the ball and plays excellent defense. Guard Kenlee Crouch (5-8, Jr.) is the Lady Elks top shooter averaging 8.0 points a game. Her other stats include 3.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.0 steals every contest. Her production and consistency around the rim is something coach Ellison is counting on this year. Devyn Metcalf (5-7, Sr.) is another player coach Ellison is looking to for quality minutes on the court. Guard Melissa Southard (5-9, So.) may be the next generation to take over, but her talents should allow her playing time this season. Other players to look for include Callie
Caswell (5-6, Sr.), Caroline Quejeda (5-8, Sr.), Rachel Wilson (5-6, So.), Abby Bruner (5-8, So.), Hope Butler (5-4, So.), Makyla Jones (5-6, Jr.) and Taylor Gordon (5-7, So.).
Girls Photos provided by Rhonda Merrifield Elk City Elks Lucian Bliss 2015-16 Record: 13-14
Outlook: Consistency and balance is what head coach Lucian Bliss is looking for this season and with three returning starters and a truckload of juniors, he may have found it. â€œWe have a very balanced team with a lot of interchangeable pieces. Our success will be defined by our ability to space the floor with the ball, player movement and getting good defensive position and rebounding,â€? said coach Bliss. Chipper Skelton (6-2, Jr.) came on strong last season averaging 13 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. Skelton gets the nod at guard while Shylar Thornton
(6-2, Jr.) will play forward. Thornton averaged 7.0 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists with 2.0 steals a game. The combo brings athleticism and court awareness to the floor. Cooper Rodgers (5-10, Jr.) brings that element of fearlessness to the game for the Elks. Rodgers can hit from outside or drive the lane. Trent Lewallen (6-4, Jr.) has an inside presence that allows him to get to the rim. He can also drain shots from the outside. Lewallen averaged 18 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists a year ago as a sophomore. Junior guard Payton David (5-11) brings more outside shooting to the mix. He averaged 10 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.0 assist last season. Also look for Diquan Bradford (5-10, Jr.) and Brendan Harrison (6-1, Sr.) to see significant time on the court. Bradford averaged 9.0 points as a sophomore. Boys Photos by Jim Hodnett
WEATHERFORD EAGLES BOYS Head Coach: Tim Price 15-16 Record: 13-13 Outlook: This tough-minded, disciplined team will look to play some unselfish basketball on the offensive end of the floor and use ball movement to create better shot selections. Head coach Tim Price returns one starter from last season, but is confident this team can get it done. Jaxon Thomas (5-11, Sr.) averaged 8.0 points and 3.0 rebounds per game last year. Guard Josh Kirby (5-11, Sr.) scored 4.0 points and grabbed 2.0 rebounds of his own to go with the production of Thomas. The combo can create opportunities for other teammates with their vision and decision making with the ball. Garrett Hoffman (6-2, Jr.) has good size and athleticism and will join Thomas and Kirby at guard. “We will look to play a very unselfish
style of basketball with good ball movement and good shot selection,” coach Price said.
GIRLS Head Coach: Clay Stephens 15-16 Record: 15-13 Outlook: With three returning starters to the lineup, the Lady Eagles confidence is soaring. Head coach Clay Stephens returns Alexa Henry (5-6, Sr.) at guard, Kylee Stewart (5-9, Sr.) at forward and Bailee Roberson (5-8, Sr.) at guard. The trio have the opportunity to lead the Lady Eagles to another competitive season. Kelsey Cummins (5-7, Jr.) could get the start at forward with Lyric Nuegent (5-8, So.) seeing time as a post player. Brooklyn Hicks (5-8, So.) will come off the bench for head coach Clay Stephens with Megan Yearwood (5-7, Jr.), Shelly McCoy (5-8, Jr.) and Morgan Cook (5-8, Jr.).
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Character is a combination of qualities that distinguishes one person or group from another. VYPE celebrates achievements of local high school athletes by presenting the monthly “Character Counts Award.” Weatherford High School junior Megan Yearwood is a varsity basketball player and this month’s Character Counts Award winner. As a member of the varsity basketball team Yearwood has learned while playing under head coach Clay Stephens that teamwork is the key to success even when things are not going your way.
“My teammates are like my family. We might not see eye-to-eye all of the time, but at the end of the day I know they’ve all got my back and we can all count on each other,” said Yearwood. But one lesson has stuck with her throughout her playing career at Weatherford; having good character on and off the court is essential to your success of a person.
Megan Yearwood Weatherford High School
“I think having character means being the type of person that everyone can count on. No matter what the situation, you’re always trying to find a way around it and stay positive while in the process. Character on the court comes to me whenever the team might need an encouraging word to get fired up or when I might make a mistake or miss a shot
and I need to just tell myself to shake it off and get back to the game,” said Yearwood.
It’s that type of sportsmanship and character Yearwood displays separates her from many of her peers. “In my personal opinion, having good sportsmanship is one of the most important keys to athletics. If you don’t have a good attitude about things it will reflect badly on yourself and eventually affect the way you play in the game,” said Yearwood. As a junior she is involved in several activities at school including the Early Bird Readers Program at Burcham Elementary and she runs track. “I love playing for Weatherford High School. The environment is great and I’ve also made some great friendships while having the opportunity to compete for them. After graduation I would like to possibly go on to play college basketball and study sports medicine,” said Yearwood.
For her sportsmanship on the court and her character as a student-athlete at Weatherford High School, Megan Yearwood is this month’s Character Counts Award recipient.
Weatherford Academic Athlete of the Month Kelsey Cummins is a junior at Weatherford High School where she plays varsity volleyball and basketball.
As a member of both the volleyball and basketball teams, Cummins has developed an appreciation for her teammates and what they have accomplished working together.
“My teammates mean the most to me. I’ve grown up with this group of girls. They’ve made me a better person and will always know what’s best for me,” said Cummins.
As a junior Cummins is involved in several clubs including the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Criminology Club and the Early Bird program, which members read to younger children once a week before school. Her competitiveness doesn’t end when she steps off the court. In the classroom Cummins is focused and pushes herself to achieve academic excellence. Currently carrying a 3.8
grade point average, her courses include AP Chemistry II, Honors Algebra II and Forensics.
“School is very important to me. I try to push myself to be the best I can be in all my classes. AP Chemistry II is my favorite class because I love the teacher, my classmates, and the subject. After graduating I would like to attend the University of Oklahoma,” said Cummins. Competing for Weatherford is something she loves to do and is proud to call WHS home.
Kelsey Cummins Mickley, which are my volleyball coaches and coach Stephens, who is my basketball coach. I’m glad I’ve gotten to play for coaches that support me and will always know and want what’s best for me,” Cummins said.
“I like that everyone is so supportive of each other. I’ve loved all of my coaches, especially Mr. and Mrs.
WRESTLING CLINTON RED TORNADOS Five state qualifiers return to the mat for the Red Tornadoes giving the Clinton faithful high hopes for the 2016-17 season. Clinton head coach Shawn Finch has plenty to be excited about this season. All but one of his five returning state qualifiers are juniors and the numbers in the wrestling room are up.
“We will be competing for our 4th district title in a row this year,” said coach Finch.
Hayden Williams qualified last year for the state tournament at 106-pounds, but may make the move to 113. Williams finished the year 31-9 making it to the semifinals of the consolation side of the bracket. At 113-pounds Gonzalo Rivera returns to the mat looking for more than just being a state qualifier. Gonzalo wants on that podium. Last season he finished with a record of 29-13, and like Williams, Gonzalo could move up in weight if necessary.
Greyson Weedon is a two-time state qualifier and finished last year with a record of 30-12. Weedon will rely on his experience and talent to get back to the state tournament. The last junior in the group of returning qualifiers is Tyler Maley who made the tournament last year at 160-pounds. Maley lost in the opening round last year to the eventual champion, Wyatt Sheets from Stilwell. Senior Daniel Lopez made the podium in 2015 finishing fourth, but lost his first two bouts in 2016 to end his run at 31-11. Lopez is
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more than capable of finding his way back to a medal round and may do it at 170 or 182-pounds. Other guys to watch this season include Zack Acosta (220, Sr.), Chris Borjas (195, Sr.), and Jeff McDow (132-138, Sr.). “Other than our returning state qualifiers, Dason Hicks, Andres Flores, Myron Reeves and D.J. Craddock will be first time starters as juniors this year. They are all great wrestlers and exciting to watch,” said coach Finch.
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RIVERSIDE INDIAN SCHOOL BRAVES Riverside Indian School Lady Braves James Kelley 15-16 Record: 15-11 Outlook: If you like ball movement and an up-tempo offense, you will love the Lady Braves. Keva New Holy (5-3, So.) will run the point giving head coach James Kelley a young, but capable player that makes good decisions with the ball. Mercedes Jefferson (5-6, Sr.) is the shooting guard that can hit from any spot on the floor. A pair of small forwards will help push the tempo and play that pressing defense coach Kelley is known for. Shaniece Village Center (5-6, Jr.) and Rahshawna Macon (5-9, Sr.) are capable of being game changers at forward. Darrian Diwayan (6-0, Sr.) averaged 14 points and 8.0 rebounds at center and will have a strong presence at the post. Seanna Boltz (5-5, So.) may be the first guard off the bench as her quickness and shot selection makes her a perfect 6th-man. Other players to look for include Misty Calf Boss Ribs (5-3, Jr.), Celeste WhitePlum (5-6, So.), Caitlyn Hebah (5-2, Sr.), Darleen Paddlety (5-7, Sr.), Madison Herrera (5-6, Sr.) and Miranda Beaver (6-0, Sr.). “Diwayan should average a double-double this season. She’s received multiple college looks already. This could be a breakout year for the Lady Braves,” coach Kelley said. Through December the Lady Braves were 13-1 and ranked in the top 20. Riverside Indian School Braves Patrick Moore 15-16 Record: 26-4
Outlook: Head coach Patrick Moore is been on the staff as an assistant or as the head coach for 10 years. During that time last years team may be the best team he’s coached. Last season the Braves went 26-4 overall and return two starters to the lineup this season. Jose Whatoname (5-8, Sr.) is back to lead the Braves from his guard position. Zach Ramirez (6-3, Sr.) is the second returning starter and is expected to make a big impact at forward. “We return two starters from last years team. Add a lot of young kids with not much experience, but they’ve been in the system so they should be ready to step in and play,” coach Moore said. One of those young players is Francisco Whatoname (5-8, So.). Whatoname will have opportunities to prove himself as a go-to player. Nate Howlingcrane (5-11, Jr.) and Hugh Edmo (5-11, So.) round out the starting lineup. Several other teams in the class have the Braves ranked in their top 10. Riverside has the opportunity to not only have another great season, but to be considered one of the teams to beat. Just before the New Year arrived the Braves had reached the top 10 ranked No. 8 overall in Class 3A with a record of 11-2. JANUARY 2017
CHICKASHA FIGHTIN' CHICKS BOYS Head Coach: Wes Pulliam 2015-16 Record: 20-7 Two proven performers return to the hardwood for Chickasha from last season’s 20-7 squad that earned a trip to the Big House and the Class 4A boys state tournament. Head coach Wes Pulliam welcomes the return of standout guard Brock Henderson (6-2, Sr.), who enters his fourth year in the lineup having totaled 1,498 points in his stellar career including 17.4 points per game last year. Also returning is Magyver Boles (6-3, Sr.) whose scrappy style added 8.3 points and 7.1 rebounds last season. Three other seniors Caleb Ross (6-4, Sr.), Caleb Crowder (5-10, Sr.) and Andrew Sinn (5-10, Sr.) will add leadership to this year’s team. Also expected to be playmakers in the lineup will be
Ethan Christian (6-0, Jr.), Dean Autaubo (5-9, So.), Logan Johnson (6-2, So.), Seth Alexander (6-1, So.) and David Thibodeaux (5-11, Jr.). “We’re still going to play fast and defend end to end,” notes Pulliam. “Brock and Magyver give us experience and the rest of the team have worked hard to be ready to step into the limelight.
GIRLS Head Coach: Kirk Reimers 2015-16 Record: 22-7 While there will be many new faces in the lineup, don’t turn your eyes off the Lady Chicks this year. While only one starter Karissa Duke (5-5, Sr.) who totaled 8.1 points and 3.4 steals per game back at point guard, Chickasha’s roster has proven performers including Meredith Noland (5-9, Sr.) who
averaged 7.2 points, along with Jaycie Brown (5-10, Sr.) who also contributed 5.2 points and 3.3 rebounds a year ago. Head coach Kirk Reimers anxiously awaits to see the development of this year’s squad that will look to Lynnsie Elam (5-10, Sr,) Addisyn Chambers (59, Sr.) as well as Makenzie Pulliam (5-4, So.) as playmakers. The depth of the Lady Chicks will also get a boost with the contributions of Trysten Chambers (5-10, So.), Erin Powell (5-9, Jr.), Kylie Harman (5-6, Jr.) and Dekyra Foster (5-6, Jr.). “Our five seniors understand what it take to be a contender in a chase for the state tournament,” said Reimers. “Because of this group’s competitive nature, we’ll be a team that you can’t afford to take lightly.”
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Academic Athlete of the Month Brock Henderson - Chickasha A three-sport star at Chickasha High School, Brock Henderson has not only set high standards for himself in athletics, but academics as well.
both mentally and physically for the entire 32 minutes,” said Henderson.
The football, basketball and baseball star serves as the Vice President of the COOP (Pep Club), is a member of the National Honor Society and participates in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. If that wasn’t enough Henderson carries a 3.8 grade point average.
After graduation Henderson will join the University of Oklahoma baseball team on scholarship, but he’ll never forget what his high school teammates meant to him.
Henderson has a love for athletics and is currently in the middle of basketball season.
“You can never be a great team without great teammates. The bond is a must to work together to react to passing and scoring. My teammates react to the fast paced movement of the game of basketball,” said Henderson.
“I love the game of basketball because without hard work and determination you wont see results. The high paced, intense energy and that focus is a must. I like to compete
Henderson said his father, Brett Henderson has been a big influence in
his life on and off the field. “He has spent countless hours with me practicing after team practice is over. With these extra hours of practice I am able to achieve much more,” said Henderson. In his free time Henderson loves to play sports such as baseball, golf and the occasional game of pingpong or relaxing at his favorite fishing hole.
Academic Athlete of the Month Jewelee Igo - Anadarko Jewelee Igo is an honors student at Anadarko High School where she also participates in cross-country. Igo was a member of the cross-country team that competed at the state completion held at Oklahoma Baptist University. Igo helped the squad to an 11th place overall finish. In the classroom the race to the top is just as competitive. For Igo, taking honors classes is part of that journey. Currently she is taking honors Human Anatomy, pre Calculus, Chemistry I, and AP English III. “My favorite class has to be Human Anatomy,” said Igo. When she’s not on the course or at practice you can certainly find her at one of several clubs she belongs to including National Honor Society
and the Key Club. But her activities do not stop there. Igo is a member of STUCO, the Fish Club, 4H and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. To say her plate is full would be an understatement. Once she graduates from high school Igo is looking forward to continuing her education and pursue something she is very passionate about, biology. “When I go to college I want to study biology and become a Marine biologists,” said Igo.
It’s easy to see why the faculty and staff at Anadarko High School is proud to call Jewelee Igo one of their own. From her efforts on the cross country team, to being involved in school activities like student council and pushing herself to make the most of the opportunities at AHS, Igo is the model student and the perfect student-athlete for the Anadarko Bank of Commerce Academic Athlete of the Month award.
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ANADARKO WARRIORS BOYS Doug Schumpert 15-16 Record: 25-4 Two senior guards are returning for head coach Doug Schumpert in Adrian Labrada and Curtis Oseceola. Labrada averaged 6.1 points per game while Oseceola averaged 4.7 points. Christian Braveheart (5-11, So.) looks to crack the starting lineup alongside Jaidyn Tselee (6-1, Jr.). Tselee saw time last season, but should be more of a factor from the forward spot this year. Transfer James Davis (5-9, Sr.) comes in from Del City and football star Trey Eason (5-10, Jr.) will provide depth at guard and give coach Schumpert the opportunity to run the floor.
Class 4A Teague Stands (6-2, Sr.) and Ryan Parker (5-10, Sr.) are two players to watch this season as they both look to contribute to the overall success of the program. A new addition to the coaching staff includes the hire of assistant Adrian Davis. GIRLS Jeff Zinn 15-16 Record: N/A Looking like the Anadarko of old is something this team has set out to do with their play on the defensive end of the floor. Katelyn Johnson (5-7, Sr.) was an All-Conference selectee last season and brings that tenacity on defense head coach Jeff Zinn is looking for from his seniors. Jessica Quoetone (5-4,
So.) brings speed to the floor and gives the team another player that can press an offense. Also look for Hallie Horton (5-5, So.) at guard. Horton can make shots and spark the team offensively. Forwards Kori Williams (5-8) and Kelsi Smith (5-7) will patrol the paint giving the Lady Warriors a presence in the paint. Guard Skylee Glass (5-5, Jr.) and forward Kimberly Stephens (5-3, So.) will provide depth and could see some significant time this season. “We have a chance to return to form of playing dominate defense with a lot of depth and experience returning,” said coach Zinn.
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Curtis Oseceola JANUARY 2017
By Michael Kinney Photos courtesy of Annette Bower Duncan Demons K. David McGuire 2015-16 Record: 7-16
Outlook: The 2015-16 season was not one the Duncan Demon faithful will want to keep in their memory books. The 7-16 record was a far cry from expectations. So, heading into the 2016-17 campaign, K. David McGuire seems to want to rebuild the program from the ground up. With only one upperclassman on this year’s roster, the name of the game will be building the foundation for future teams. “We are extremely young, with only one senior (Jordon Santos) on the team,” McGuire said. “But while this group lacks experience, they do not lack in their desire. Their desire to win has fueled their offseason work on the court and in the weight room, their commitment to each other and their passion for the game. I am extremely excited about where they are right now, but I can’t wait to
see how they develop as the season progresses and over the next couple of years.” The Demons return one starter from last season. Grant Braught averaged 4.7 points and 3.7 rebounds as a sophomore. The 6-foot-2 forward, who is also being recruited to punt in college, is going to be counted for more than just numbers on the court as a junior. According toe DHS staff, juniors Coby Kirkland (6-2, F) and Brendan Waller
(6-5, F) – had strong offseasons and are expected to provide some veteran leadership to an otherwise very young team. The Demons are also looking for a trio of sophomores to make their presence felt this season. Sam Petersen took over as the starting point guard while forwards Kevin Wilson and Josh Bumgarner are expected to help in the scoring department. The start of the season has been a
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extremely proud of how they have responded so far.” Duncan Lady Demons Grant Givens 2015-16 Record: 3-21
Jordan Santos tough one for Duncan. They head into the Christmas break with a 0-8 record. But McGuire knows that is part of learning to win in a competitive class. “As a coaching staff, we have challenged this group to improve each and every day they step in the gym,” McGuire said. “They understand how tough Class 5A basketball is and only the physically, mentally, and emotionally strong advance in the play-offs. I am
Outlook: Coach Grant Givens wants to build his Duncan High girls basketball team on defense. After a 3-21 season in 2015-16, he wants this year to be one in which they should be able to compete in every game they are in. For that to happen, the Lady Demons have to be able to play hard nosed defense at home or on the road in hostile environments that typically pop up in Class 5A. “We will be a team that will be able to put some pressure on the perimeter,” Givens said. “We also will have a strong post defense.” The Lady Demons return four starters from last year’s squad. But they have five players back who saw action. They include Sabrina Stewart (5-8), Katrina Bevans (5-8), Tayah Allen (5-7), Honesti Dangerfield (58) and Andee Beth Fitts. (5-11)
As a junior post player, Stewart averaged 7.0 points and three rebounds. Guards Dangerfield and Allen each posted 6 points. Joining Stewart on the froncourt are a pair of seniors who should be able to help protect the basket and pull down their share of rebounds. The 6-foot Falon Howell and Fitts have the size to cause opponents problems on each size of the ball. Fitts, who has a 4.0 GPA and scored a 32 on her ACT, posted 3.0 points and 4.0 rebounds a night as junior. Duncan kicked off this year with a 52-45 win over Chickasha. However, they lost their next four contests to Altus, Ardmore, Harding Prep and Norman (6A). The silver lining is that the Lady Demons only allowed one of those teams to score more than 50 points. “I’m looking forward to this season because of the hard work our girls have put in,” Givens said. “We have been building up for this season. We have a strong group of upperclassmen who look to make a change.”
MOM OF THE Jill Harris
Story By Andee Beth Fitts Jill Harris has her hands full as a mom to her six kids, J.J., Saleidi, Emilio, Marshall, Reed, and Bella in addition to being a coach’s wife to Duncan High School coach Josh Harris. J.J. is a sophomore at Duncan High School and plays football, wrestling, and golf. Saleidi is an 8th grader at Duncan Middle School and is on the cheerleading, basketball, and golf teams. Emilio, a 4th grader, and Marshall, a 2nd grader both participate in youth wrestling, while Reed and Bella are in 1st grade and Kindergarten, respectively. Even with such involved kids, Jill still finds time to help out with each program as well as in the Duncan community. During wrestling season, Jill helps provide refreshments, especially fruit, for both the high school and youth wrestling teams. When Duncan hosts wrestling tournaments, she helps provide food and drinks for the hospitality room. Jill also supports her children by trying her best to attend every wrestling match and football, basketball, and golf game that her children are involved in. Not only is Jill an active throughout Duncan athletics, she is also supportive of the Duncan community. She is an active member of Duncan’s New Life Church where she teaches a foster and adoptive parent class and volunteers with her entire family as part of the hospitality team. Jill is also a part-time ambassador for Noonday Collection, a company that partners with artisan businesses in 12 different countries as well as adoptive families to help them fundraise for the adoption process. She sells intricate handmade accessories that help provide empowering jobs to those in need worldwide. For her commitment to helping others in need from Duncan athletics to the Duncan community to those around the world, Jill Harris is most deserving of VYPE Magazine’s Duncan Mom of the Month.
r Brendan Walle
Duncan High Sc
Brendan Waller has not only developed into a great athlete, but is also a standout in the classroom as well. Waller, a junior at Duncan High School, is a three sport athlete as a member of the varsity football, basketball, and track teams and maintains a 4.0 grade point average as well. He is also in his first year at the Red River Technology Center’s Biomedical Science Academy where he just finished taking Principles of Biomedical Science as well as Anatomy and Physiology. In this upcoming semester at the Biomedical Science Academy, Brendan will be taking Human Body Systems as well as trigonometry and pre-calculus. At Duncan High School, he is enrolled in Honors Algebra 2, Advanced Placement English 3, and online United States History. Brendan plans to attend college and major in biomedical engineering. Brendan says that academics are important to him because, “I have goals I plan to achieve in my life and expect nothing but excellence from myself because I know I can do whatever I set my mind to.” His determined attitude and excellent work ethic have been noticed by his coaches, especially Duncan’s head boys’ basketball coach David McGuire. McGuire says that, “Brendan is an extremely hard worker on the court and in the classroom. He excels academically and because of his work ethic, he is starting to excel athletically. I am very proud of who he is and even more proud of who he is going to be in the future.” For his commitment to academics as well as athletics, Brendan Waller is VYPE Magazine’s Duncan Academic Athlete of the Month.
Katrina Bevans has become a great athlete for the Duncan Lady Demons and has carried over this excellence on the court and field over to the classroom as well. Katrina, a junior at Duncan High School, is a two sport athlete as a member of the varsity girls’ basketball and track teams and maintains a 4.0 grade point average as well. She is a first year student in the Health Careers program at the Red River Technology Center where she is taking anatomy and physiology as well as long term care. At the end of her first year in the Health Careers program, Katrina will become a Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA as she completes all the required courses and exams offered through Health Careers. At Duncan High School, she is enrolled in trigonometry as well as English 4. After high school, Katrina plans to become a Registered Nurse, or RN, and possibly a nurse practitioner later on. When asked why academics are important to her, Katrina said, “They (academics) are important to help me further my education and so that I will be able to get into a good nursing program.” Katrina’s strong work ethic and her drive to accomplish her goals is something that makes her stand out to her peers, teachers, and coaches. Duncan head girls’ basketball coach Grant Givens says, “Katrina is a very smart and hard worker both in basketball and the classroom. Her mother did an excellent job teaching both of her daughters how to work hard in anything they do.” For her dedication to excellence both on and off the court, Katrina Bevans is most deserving of VYPE Magazine’s Duncan Academic Athlete of the Month.
Katrina B evans Duncan H
Submit your nomination for the Whitten Academic Athlete of the Month to: Oklahoma@VYPE.com
Plainview Wrestling nity. A chance for someone to step up and fill a spot.
Ty Lucas The Plainview Indians may have graduated several state placers, but that doesn’t mean the cupboards are empty. Entering the 2016-17 season head coach Rocky Atencio was coming off a memorable season that witnessed Plainview sending 10 wrestlers to the state tournament, nine of which placed.
Gone are Zach Atencio (4th @126), Maddie Roney (3rd @132), Tanner O’Neal (1st @152), Seth Fritts (2nd @182) and Dorian Fagan (2nd @285). Any other head coach might look at that list and think the team could be in trouble. But at Plainview, coach Atencio sees opportu-
Two state champions will make their return to the mat to defend their titles, however Ty Lucas will probably do it at a new weight. The senior won the 145-pound bracket last year making him a two-time state champion. His first title came at 138-pounds. Lucas would become Plainview’s first three-time state champion, an accomplishment that would mean a lot to the program. The four-time All-American and will move up to 152-pounds and attempt to win three state titles at three different weight classes. Fellow state champion Jaxon Roney will likely remain at his 120-pound class and look to defend his title there. Roney, only a junior, has a chance to follow in his teammates footsteps, but first he must conquer the talented division that is 120-pounds. Last season as a sophomore Roney pinned his first opponent at the state tournament then proceeded to win the next two matches by a major decision. Sending a statement to the rest of Class 3A that he wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
Senior Bodie Davis is someone people are keeping a close eye on this season. Last year wrestling at 195-pounds, Davis finished runner-up to Locust Grove senior Trent Monk. A loss that has motivated Davis. This season Davis is expected to drop to 182-pounds where Sulphur junior Dan Baker awaits. The pair seem to be on a collision course. Another senior for Plainview looking to climb the podium this season is 170-pounder Eli Paul. Paul finished 3rd last year with a record of 32-15 and a win over Justice Yates of Geary/Watonga to take third. Zane Miller and Garrett Willis are both state qualifiers and should make a run at the state tournament. Miller qualified last
year at 160-pounds but lost in the semifinals of the consolation bracket. Look for Miller to make a jump in weight classes and compete possibly at 195lbs. Willis is a two-time state qualifier and is ready to get back to state tournament form. Now a senior Willis has one goal in mind and that’s to find his way to the podium. As a team the Indians won the Class 3A title by a huge margin. To repeat that accomplishment the guys listed above must perform as they are expected to do, but some of the younger talent in the wrestling room must mature and meet the call. If that happens this could be another memorable season for coach Atencio and the Plainview Indians.
Ardmore Wrestling 2011 and 2012 when Evan McGee won the 285-pound title in back-to-back seasons.
Quintarius Horton Photos By www.OklahomaWrestling.org Ardmore head coach Kevin Gill enters the 2016-17 season with a pair of seniors looking to leave their mark on the program.
Coming into the season the Ardmore Tigers looked to a pair of seniors in Quintarius Horton (145) and Ryan Riley (138) as their best shot at state. The Tigers last state champion came in
Horton went 11-1 last year and has an opportunity to add his name to the list of Tiger greats. Six of the eight state qualifiers at 145-pounds graduated, leaving the weight class wide open.
Last season Riley had a similar run going 12-1, but unlike Horton, Riley will have to face several returning state qualifiers if he’s going to make a push for the state tournament. Lawton MacArthur’s Hunter Jump returns as well as several others from the east side of the state.
wrestlers in the weight class and could have a breakout year.
Raphael Interiano may be the youngest of the group, but he’s athletic and has tremendous potential. Only a sophomore Interiano went 10-3 last season as a freshman. Impressive numbers for his first year of varsity wrestling. Coach Gill his filled the wrestling room with talented coaches such as Jimmy Langford, Grant Naylor, Alex Doby and AT Benson. This group of coaches have the experience needed in the Ardmore program to take it to the next level. Depth may be an issue during duals, but look for those numbers to continue improving as coach Gill and the team continue to have success on the mat.
Junior Michael Case went 10-4 last season and will wrestle at 120-pounds. Case has shown signs of being one of the top
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