JV courts felt Lady Bulldogs’ bite this winter

Published 12:00 am Monday, February 28, 2005

Suffolk News-Herald

Less than five months ago, the King’s Fork High School junior varsity basketball team had never before stepped on a court together.

But by the time the little Lady Bulldogs left the court for the last time, they were one of the most successful caging squads in the area.

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Suffolk’s newest team of hoopsters compiled an 18-3 record, the best of any basketball team in Suffolk, and second in the Southeastern District. On Thursday night, it and the rest of the 2004-05 squads said goodbye to their season at the school’s winter sports banquet.

&uot;It takes a lot of courage to step out onto a field, track or court,&uot; said athletic director Beth Mair. &uot;Sometimes they mess up, sometimes they do well. Add that on the to fact that we’re a new school, and that made it even harder. But we had courage, and went out and did our best. That’s all we can ask.&uot;

The younger girls weren’t the only basketball team to take the district by storm; the varsity team, on which six of the 10 players were freshmen, went 9-14, taking perennial district powerhouse Indian River to overtime and coming within four points of Suffolk’s first district tournament victory of the millennium.

&uot;We are right there,&uot; said coach Tim Goetz. &uot;I think we got things started in the right direction.&uot; Like the school football team did last fall, the girls basketball team got the district Sportsmanship award.

Sharde Brown, who along with Ransheda Jennings represented the school on the Second All-District team, got the Most Outstanding Player award, and Latora King got the Coach’s Award. Brittany Coles won the Sportsmanship award.

In boys caging action, Loren Farris got the Sportsmanship Award, and Reone Burch was Most Improved. Sha-ka Miller received a special award for having the team’s highest grade point average, 3.5.

Tim Dugan, who became the first Bulldog to wrestle his way to regional competition, was named the Most Valuable Wrestler. Clint Callow was Most Improved, and Dustin Burkey got the Sportsmanship honor.

In track, Peaches Leonard and Christina Davis competed in regionals in 55-meter racing, and Brandi Novak went for long jumping. Leonard was named the Best All-Around, and Novak was named Most Improved. Ivy Williams was the top sportsman.

Kurt McIntyre received the sportsman award on the boy’s team, and Josh Brown got a Big Maroon award for dedication. On the Lady Bulldogs cheerleading squad, Tamea Bynum was Most Spirited, Brittany Jones Most Valuable, and Amesha Sebron Most Improved.

&uot;To be the student you can be,&uot; said guest speaker Charles Christian, former basketball coach at Booker T. Washington and John F. Kennedy high schools and Norfolk State University, &uot;you must focus on and give constant attention to the combination of academics and athletics.

&uot;Today’s athletes are challenged to achieve in the classroom, as well as to perform in the athletic arena. You go to the weight room to strengthen your body; you go to the classroom to strengthen your mind. I ask that each of you review and evaluate your commitment to the academic-athletic circle. Upon doing this, you can fully address the responsibilities of a student-athlete.&uot;