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2005 Fall Wrap-Up
By David Kuykendall, FISD Athletic Director

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, athletes in Frisco are trading in their football helmets, volleyball shoes, tennis rackets, and jogging outfits for basketball shoes, wrestling tights, soccer cleats and swim trunks.  It has been a challenging and exciting fall for several of the high school programs.  Some teams went to the play-offs, some almost advanced to regional, and some went through a re-building process.

Centennial High School

The Lady Titan volleyball program, coached by Kari Bensend, made the play-offs in only its second year of varsity competition.  The team had a 33-7 season record, placing it second in district.  The ladies advanced to the regional semi-finals before bowing out to Red Oak in five games.  The team was led by seniors Emily Lemon, Steph Villafuerte, Sara Kindred and junior Erika Clark.  These ladies also have the distinction of becoming the first team sport in the history of CHS to advance into post-season play. Congratulations. With several outstanding underclassmen on the roster, I have a feeling we are seeing the beginning of a tradition.

Coach Carolyn Quarles had her tennis team just two games away from advancing to the Region II tennis tournament.  Ultimately, the team finished third due to a loss at the district tournament to McKinney High.  Rachel Simpson, Katie Minchew, Meagan Haynes and Narine Kazarova were a big reason for the success that this program had in only its third year of varsity competition.  Special “kudos” to Coach Quarles for being selected the district 9-AAAA coach of the year.

The Titan football program had its ups and downs this year.  Even though Coach Mark Howard’s team finished seventh this season, the average margin of defeat in each game was less than 10 points with the exception of Hebron.  Last season the average margin of defeat was 27 points.  Thus, I see improvement!  Leaders on this year’s squad included:  Matt Crook, Logan Kirby, Brandon Wood, Brandon Harrison, and Aaron Jones.  With 25 returning lettermen including two young quarterbacks, the future looks bright.

The CHS cross country squad competed well this fall.  Coaches Benton Buckley and Abby Cole have done a great job preparing the team to compete in what many think is the toughest district in the state.  Cole Reveal, who placed second in district and twenty third at regional, along with Adam Cummings and Alex Vidal led the boys program.  The girls were led by Emma Galdo, Samantha Sands and Stacey Welsh.  With only one senior on the team, next year should be a break out year for this group of runners.

Frisco High School

Coach Vance Gibson’s first year as head football coach has been truly special with a strong season.  The Fighting Raccoons were in the play-off hunt all the way to the final game of the year.  Most coaches agree that if you are playing the last game of the regular season with play-off implications, you have had a pretty good year.  Had the Raccoons won their last game, or lost by three or less points, they would have gone to the play-offs.  However, it wasn’t meant to be, as Northwest won by more than three points.  The team was led all year by Kel Presley, LeRon Walker, Antwon Davis, and Brogan Funderburg.  With 25 lettermen returning from a team that finished tied for third place in district, we should be trying for a play-off spot again next year.

The Lady Raccoons volleyball team had a tough year this fall.  This was the first time in recent memory that the squad did not make the play-offs.  However, one milestone was reached during the season.  Coach Janie Litchford recorded her 400th career victory at Frisco High School.  The team was led by Ashley Loria, Kelly Evans, Sara Clark and Alex Scheopf.  Congrats to the team and Coach Litchford for the milestone win, and I suspect with a good off-season, the play-offs will be back on the table in ’06.  

Coaches Sam Reiter and Jody Brown had their cross country runners up every morning at the crack of dawn preparing for another run at the district title.  The squad led by Josh Smetzer, Chelsea Bradford, John Faulstich and Allie Pool represented FHS well during the season.  Chelsea qualified for regional and the girls finished fifth at the tough district meet.  The boys all improved their times from last year, however, the rest of the district improved as well.

Coach Chris Barnhart is not used to watching the regional team tennis tournament from the stands.  FHS has advanced every year for the past 7-8 years but this year’s 9-AAAA line-up was tougher than ever before.  The squad finished fifth in district, with Mandy Bowling leading the way.  Coach Barnhart does feel with 17 of the 21 varsity players coming back next year; we could find FHS tennis back on top.  I’m going to count on it!

Congratulations to all the fall sports athletes and coaches.  I was at most of the contests and I was proud of the way our athletes and coaches carry themselves during both victory and defeat.  It is important to be humble in victory and gracious in defeat, because in life you will encounter both of these.  Sports afford us “teachable moments” that if acted upon, help our children to grow up. 

I look forward to a wonderful winter, filled with exciting contests, and championships being played for.