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Touchdowns to powerlifting — 2012 sports highlights
Since the ancient Mayans were wrong and the world didn’t come to an end on Dec. 21, we have yet another opportunity to look back on a year filled with sporting news from in and around Wilson County.
While the following touches on some of the highlights and headlines that captivated readers in 2012, it is by no means an all-inclusive list. With more than 1,000 athletes representing the area’s seven schools in a multitude of different sports, covering everything and everyone is a virtual impossibility.
As 2012 began, the area’s 14 local basketball teams were all right in the middle of their season. Several of the teams had put together good seasons, including all seven girls teams, and the boys teams from Falls City, Poth, Nixon-Smiley, La Vernia, and East Central.
In girls basketball, all seven teams played well enough to reach the postseason, though the Lady Brahmas were left out after finishing in a three-way tie for second place, and then losing a tiebreaker with the Lady Mustangs. Nixon-Smiley, La Vernia, and East Central all fell in the first round, Falls City and Floresville reached regional play, and Poth advanced all the way to the Class 2A state final before falling to Brock, 52-49.
On the guys side, five of the seven teams made the playoffs, while Stockdale and Floresville missed out. While the Hornets went down in the first round, the Beavers, Pirates, and Bears all fell in the area round of play. The Mustangs reached the regional quarterfinals, but were eventually bumped from the playoffs with a loss to Cole.
In addition, Poth Pirette Head Basketball Coach Peggy Hosek reached a nearly unimaginable milestone during the 2011-12 season as she earned her 800th career win. It came during the playoffs, and the Poth faithful proudly waived signs reading simply “800.”
The sport of powerlifting continues to grow in the area, and it was another good year for Wilson County athletes.
In Floresville, Tiger powerlifters Johnathan Saldana, Mark Livesay, and Abel Ingle all had great seasons, and the trio of lifters qualified for the regional meet. Saldana was poised for a run at the state title, but a questionable call by meet officials eventually left him out of the mix.
Down in Poth, the powerlifting team has continued to make a name for itself, and the success continued in 2012. Pirate lifters Chase Wiatrek and Kolby Janek each made a great showing during the district meet, as the two qualified for the regional meet. On the girls side of things, Kadalina Escobedo, Yarisa Ramon, Jessica Coronado, and Daniella Noguez all rose above the competition at the district level, and represented the Pirettes at the state meet. Teammate Marisol Palacios narrowly missed out on the state meet as she finished in fourth place in the region. Escobedo continued to impress at the state meet, and went on to win the state title in her weight class.
In Stockdale, Makaley Perez and Kristen Moore both represented the Lady Brahmas in the regional meet, while Brahma powerlifters Darion McMahan and Matt Valadez went on to the state meet. McMahan unleashed his inner beast, and won the state title in the 132-pound class.
The La Vernia tennis program has been on the rise under the leadership of Head Coach Angie Hargreaves, and the team hosted its first-ever tournament last spring. The team went on to have a great season, and once again won the district championship.
Over in Stockdale, the Brahma and Lady Brahma tennis players were also having a great season, as the team won a district championship. Junior Jordan Jackson then advanced his way through the postseason in singles play before eventually reaching the state tournament.
This past fall, Floresville enjoyed the fruits of its labors as the Tigers and Jaguars achieved a big goal of theirs, winning the district title during the fall team tennis season.
Track and field
Every year, there are a number of track and field athletes who stand out above the others, and 2012 was no different. The area has many gifted track athletes, and trips to the state meet are now commonplace.
In girls competition, Poth, Falls City, and La Vernia all won their respective district meets. And when it came time for regional and state meets, both guys and girls from across the area rose to the occasion.
In 2012, five of the area’s seven schools were represented in the state meet. East Central led the way with representation in seven different events. La Vernia athletes participated in five different events, Falls City had competitors in three events, Poth was represented in two events, and Stockdale sent one athlete to the meet. In the end, Stockdale’s one participant, Clint Ploch, returned home with some hardware, as he finished third in the pole vault.
Baseball and softball are still big draws, and as spring rolled around in 2012, Wilson County was buzzing with activity on the diamonds.
In softball action, Falls City, Poth, Stockdale, La Vernia, and East Central all had good district runs and eventually reached the playoffs. Poth, Stockdale, and East Central went down in the first round, but the Lady Bears and Beaverettes advanced to the area games in Class 3A and 1A play, respectively. Unfortunately, each came up short of regional play.
On the guys side of things, only Poth and Stockdale saw postseason play. Poth won its district and Stockdale finished well enough to grab a playoff position in the same district. The Brahmas fell in the first round of play, and after sitting out with a bye, Poth was bumped from the playoffs with a loss in the area round of play.
At the net
It was another successful year for the area’s volleyball teams, as the East Central Lady Hornets, Floresville Jaguars, La Vernia Lady Bears, and Poth Pirettes all made the playoffs.
While East Central continued to struggle with a young team, and was eliminated in the first round, the teams from Floresville, La Vernia, and Poth found a bit more success.
La Vernia and Floresville each picked up wins en route to the regional playoffs, but each fell short of a Region IV tournament appearance. Poth made it to the Region IV finals, but met up with Schulenburg, the team that won the district this year. The two had another great battle, but in the end, it was a season-ending day for the Pirettes.
Distance running over uneven trail courses isn’t for everyone, but many of the area’s athletes continue to find success in the sport they love.
While the area’s teams found mixed success, La Vernia once again stole headlines in 2012, as the Bears and Lady Bears ran over opponents all year long.
The Lady Bears, in particular, had another fantastic season, as they won the district and the Region IV title, and finished second in the state meet. The La Vernia boys also ran well this season, and they sent two athletes to the state meet.
Stockdale had an emotional season as the athletes ran hard for Head Coach Lester Jackson, and the Brahmas sent their boys team to the regional meet. In Falls City, Katie Pollock also ran well enough to qualify for a regional appearance.
In the trenches
Football is still the biggest sport in Texas, and that fact was readily seen during the 2012 season.
Falls City won its district, but several other teams made the playoffs, including the East Central Hornets, the Floresville Tigers, the La Vernia Bears, and the Poth Pirates. The Hornets played two rounds deep into the postseason, as did the Pirates. Unfortunately for Floresville and La Vernia, their seasons ended with first-round losses. Still, it was an accomplishment to reach the playoffs, and Floresville was able to do it under new Head Coach Jeff Luna, who took over following the departure of John Baker.
The Beavers made a great run at another state title, adding an area title and Region IV championship to the trophy case. Falls City advanced to the state semifinal, but came up a bit short in Cypress, ending their 2012 run at the title.
Every year, a handful of the most talented and hard-working athletes are able to earn the opportunity to continue competing, as they make the move from high school to collegiate play. In 2012, nearly 20 area students earned the right to participate in college athletics.
East Central will be well-represented again. The Hornets signed Breadon Robinson to Texas A&M-Kingsville, Nick Coleman to the U.S. Air Force Academy, Kyle Padalecki to Texas Tech, and Evan White to Lamar. Softball player Megan Dugie signed with Texas Lutheran University.
Floresville High School had a good crop of athletes sign in 2012, including Samantha Flores to the University of Texas at Dallas, Jaylee Fernandez to Copiah-Lincoln, and Brittany Aikens to Howard College. Jessica Castro signed with Wesleyan University, Lauren Cook signed with Cisco College, and Jamie Crowder signed with Stephen F. Austin State University.
La Vernia sent Claire LaHue and Alex Cruz to Our Lady of the Lake University, and Natalie Baker signed on to run track at Texas Tech. Garrett Rabel will compete on the rifle team at Jacksonville State University during the next academic year.
Colton West of Stockdale signed with the University of the Incarnate Word, Nixon-Smiley’s Robbie Mejia signed with Victoria College, and Poth Pirette Micah Weaver recently inked her deal with Texas A&M-Kingsville.
And there’s more
In addition to all these traditional sports, the sports pages of the Wilson County News reported on several additional happenings.
Swimming doesn’t generally capture the headlines in Wilson County, but Stockdale’s Clayton Lynn did his best to change that in 2012, as he made a big splash in state swimming action. After blowing past district opponents, Lynn won regional titles in both the 200-meter individual medley and 100-meter breaststroke. In doing so, Lynn set a new regional record in the breaststroke. He eventually swam in the state meet.
Soccer is only played at East Central and Floresville, but the Tigers had a great 2012 season, as they made the playoffs for the first time in school history. Once in the playoffs, the team earned its first playoff win.
Firearms are once again a big topic, but a couple of shops made the news for good reasons, as they began operations in Wilson County. J. Earl Bridges opened Bridges Rifle Company and Gunsmithing over in La Vernia, offering a retail store and complete gunsmithing services. Fred Ohnesorge later expanded his shop with the introduction of Acme Guns and Gear, providing a retail front for customers seeking firearms, accessories, and ammo, catering to the personal protection market, specifically.
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