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Lady Jackets gearing up for playoffs

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050423 Chester LadyJacketsThe CHS Lady Jacket Softball Team will play Martinsville this weekend for round two of the state softball playoffs.  Game one will be on Friday, May 5 at 6:00 p.m. at Huntington High School.  Game two will be on Saturday, May 6 at 12 p.m. at Huntington High School, with game three (if needed) at 3 p.m.  Pictured are the team with their coaches:  Head Coach Crystal Muncrief, Kinsley Barnes, Marae Pounds, Lauren Citrano, Emma Byrd, Lily Read, Koree Hilliard, Lily Payne, Alyssa White, Kaylee Tolar, Abby Grimes, Coach Susan Muncrief, and Coach Courtney Tonnies.  Photo by Jana Rayburn | Tyler County Booster

By Jana Rayburn

The Chester Lady Jackets played a warm up game last week against the Big Sandy Lady Wildcats. The Lady Jackets took the lead late in the game when Lauren Citrano doubled in the sixth inning, scoring three runs.

Both Kaylee Tolar and Kinsley Barnes were in the circle for the Lady Jackets. Citrano led the team at the plate with two hits in four at bats. The final score was a 7-5 Chester victory. Coach Crystal Muncrief was elated with the outcome of the game.

The Lady Jackets will get round two of the State Softball Playoffs started this weekend with a best of three series against the Martinsville Lady Pirates. Game one will be played on Friday, May 5 at 6 p.m. Game two will be on Saturday, May 6 at 12 p.m., with game three (if necessary) at 3 p.m. All games will be played at Huntington High School softball field.

CHS Athletic Awards

Chester High School honored their student athletes last week in front of parents, teachers, and staff. These athletes were recognized for their dedication to their sports by the coaches who spent countless hours with them during the year.

The volleyball MVP’s for the year were Emma Grimes and Lily Read. Keighen Green was named football MVP. MVP’s in cross country were Travis Zulpo and Kyli Handley. Basketball MVP’s were Lily Read, Jack Rayburn, and Rick Carlton.

The Aubry Bradley Award was awarded to Jack Rayburn, Jaxon Gay, Lily Read, and Kinsley Barnes. The baseball, softball, track, and golf MVP awards will be named after their respective seasons come to a close.

Yellowjacket Baseball

The Chester Yellowjackets are the District 24-1A/2A Champions. The Jackets went 12-1 in district play this season. Their only loss came last week when the Jackets lost to Brookeland 9-10, outhitting the Wildcats and climbing back from a seven-hit deficit. Leading the Jackets at the plate with two hits apiece were Jack Rayburn, Jaxon Gay, and Jesse Bittick. Will Thomason and Trayce Knox pitched for the Jackets. This loss tied these two teams for first. Brookeland then conceded the tie-breaker game, making the Yellowjackets the outright District Champions and giving them a bye in round one of the playoffs. Chester will face either Kennard or North Zulch, who play at the end of this week. To get ready for the Area round, Chester will play a warm up game against the Leverett’s Chapel Lions, District Champions of 19-1A/2A, on Friday, May 5 at 4 p.m. at Huntington High School.

High School Track and Field

The Chester Yellowjacket Track and Field teams traveled to Jourdanton to compete in the Regional Track meet last week.
There were 12 athletes from Chester participating in the meet, seven of those being freshmen. Kinsley Barnes finished seventh in the 100M dash. Lauren Citrano just missed qualifying for finals in the 200M dash.

All the relay teams competed in a very tough region, and all teams had their times improve throughout the season. Congratulations to all participants on a great 2023 track season!

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Spurger Pirate runners earn first-place at district track meet

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042023 Spurger Pirate TrackThe Spurger Pirate boys’ track and field athletes brought home the gold, with a first-place finish in the boys’ events at the District 28-1A Track Meet last week in Zavalla. Jose Medina; Luis Jimenez; Kade Ford; Gage Gray; Josh Grissom; Landon Heim; Coby Anthony all medaled in their events. Photo courtesy of Spurger ISD

By Chris Edwards
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ZAVALLA – Tyler County was well-represented in the District 28-1A Track Meet, which took place last Thursday, April 13, with Zavalla High School as the host school.

The Spurger Pirate boys took the gold in the boys’ division, with 128 total points accumulated through the day’s events. Chester earned a fourth-place finish with 88 points.

In the girls’ events, Chester got a silver finish, as a team, with 116 points awarded to the Lady Jacket runners. The Lady Pirates of Spurger notched a sixth-place team finish, with 35.5 points.

Here is a run-down of the events, and which Tyler County athletes placed:

In the 100-meter dash finals: Chester’s Jaxon Gay medaled gold, with a time of 11.42 seconds. For the 400-meter dash finals:

Landon Heim, of Spurger, brought home the silver, with a time of 54.42 seconds.

Heim and teammate Gage Gray earned second and third, respectively, for the 800-meter run finals, with times of 2:11.70 and 2:27.74.

In the 1600-meter run finals, Spurger’s Jose Medina seized the silver, with a finish of 5:21.23 and teammate Luis Jimenez finished third with a time of 5:37.80.

Medina and Jimenez finished first and second, respectively, in the 3200-meter run with times of 11:49.70 and 12:19.298.

In the 110-meter hurdles, Josh Grissom of Spurger, finished first, with a time of 17.85, and teammate Coby Anthony got the silver, with a 19.41 finish.

The relay team of Chester’s Chase Bertrand; Kessler Romo; Jesse Bittick and Rick Carlton finished second in the 4x200 relay, with a time of 1:45.25.

In the boys’ field events, Bittick seized the gold in shot put with a distance of 36’-9 1/2”, and Spurger’s Kade Ford got second, with a 36’-8” throw.

Ford won first in the discus throw, with a distance of 114’-7 3/4”.

Romo and fellow Yellowjacket PJ Purvis won second and third place in the high jump competition, with heights of 5’-6” for Romo and 5’-5” for Purvis.

For the girls’ events, Chester’s Kinsley Barnes won the first-place medal in the 100-meter dash, with a time of 13.46 seconds.

Chester’s Lauren Citrano placed second in the 200-meter dash with a time of 29.26.

In the 800-meter run, Spurger’s Jillian Leasman won second-place, with a time of 3:01.37 and her teammate Emily Fea won third-place with a 3:01.81 finish.

Chester’s Sydney Brock earned a third-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles, with a time of 24.45, and in the 300-meter hurdles, Fea brought home a gold for Spurger, with a time of 58.09 and Chester’s Kyli Handley earned the second-place finish, with a time of 58.75.

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Day in as Carlisle AD

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033123 cody day

By Chris Edwards
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HENDERSON – Colmesneil athletic director and head football coach Cody Day was announced to lead the Carlisle High School athletics program last Thursday.

Day will replace Clay Baker in heading up the Indians’ athletics starting for the 2023-24 school year, where he will also serve as head football coach in addition to AD duties, as he had with the Bulldogs.

Day has served four seasons in his role at CISD and led the Bulldogs to the playoffs last season to the bi-district round, where they lost to Cushing by a single point.

The Indians finished their football season last year with a perfect 4-0 district record, in a stacked conference with heavy hitters such as Teneha and Overton. They made it to the regional round and finished with a 9-1 overall record.

Day’s overall record with the Bulldogs sits at 18-21. Before Colmesneil, Day served three seasons as HC at West Hardin, where he took a previously winless team (in its 2017 season) to the playoffs in 2018.

Carlisle, a 2A-DII school, has been to the playoffs 10 consecutive seasons.

Day said that two factors attracted him to the decision to look into the position at Carlisle: the location, which he said is much closer to his wife’s family and the program’s track record, which he said has maintained a high level of success.

Of his time at Colmesneil, Day called the experience “unbelievable” and said that he cannot thank the kids enough.

“They worked their tails off and totally bought in and the community and administration has been great. I can’t thank them enough,” he said.

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Warren Softball and Baseball

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031623 warren baseball softball

The Warren Lady Warriors beat East Chambers last Friday 12-10 to get their first district win.

Pictured above, from left: Natalie Standley, Kinley Thompson, Ruby Spurlock, Abby Carrell, Emma Jeansonne, Roxie Spurlock, Brilynn Gore, Allison Smith, Jasiea Tupper, MaKayla Baker, and Brooke Ibeck.

The Lady Warriors played the Kountze Lady Lions on Tuesday. The score of that game is unavailable at press time.

The Warriors played the Hardin Hornets last week.

Pictured above, first baseman Easton Evans secures the out versus Hardin.

The boys lost 1-0 in extra innings last week and will resume district play this week against Orangefield on Friday on the road, beginning at 7 pm.

Photos courtesy of Warren ISD

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‘Jackets in it to win it with win over Burkeville

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021623 Chester GirlsThe Chester Yellowjacket Cheerleaders have done a great job pumping up the crowd and supporting the basketball team during home district games this season.  Pictured, left to right:  Kyli Handley, Lauren Citrano, Emma Byrd, Lily Payne, Marae Pounds (mascot), Lily Read, Blakeney Whitworth, Josie Pecina, and Abby Grimes. Photo by Becki Byrd

By Jana Rayburn

CHESTER — The Yellowjackets played a couple of good games this week, defeating Burkeville and losing a close game to Spurger. The Jackets played Burkeville at home on Tuesday, Feb. 7. Not only was this senior night for Chester, but the Jackets had to win this game to have a chance of making the playoffs. The Jackets rose to the challenge and defeated the Mustangs 49-40. Jack Rayburn led the Jackets with 21 points. Other Yellowjackets scoring against Burkeville were Rick Carlton with 11 points, Jesse Bittick with eight points, Bradley Davison with five points, and Cutter Lowe and Kai Hilliard with two points apiece. The Jackets traveled later the same week to Spurger. The game was extremely close the first half, with only four points separating the teams after the second quarter. However, Spurger pulled ahead in the third quarter and maintained that lead the remainder of the game. The Jackets ended up losing the hard fought battle 44-68. Rayburn led the team again with 22 points. Davison had seven points, Bittick ended the night with six points, P.J. Purvis scored four points, Jaxon Gay and Carlton each scored two points, and Hiliard scored one point.

The Jackets will most likely end the regular season tied with Burkeville for the fourth place playoff spot. As of press time, no information has been released on game date or location. Look for information on the Chester Yellowjacket Buzz Link on Facebook.

The seniors were recognized prior to the game against Burkeville. Playing their last year of basketball as Chester Yellowjackets are Jack Rayburn, Rick Carlton, Kessler Romo, Chase Bertrand, Levi Barnhart, and Jaxson Hilliard.

Lady Jacket Basketball

The Lady Jackets defeated Burkeville in their last district game of the season by a score of 65-20. Lily Read led the team with 20 points. Also scoring for the Lady Jackets were Kyli Handley with 14 points, Blakeney Whitworth and Sydney Brock with eight points apiece, Lauren Citrano with six points, Emma Byrd with five points, Abby Grimes with three points, and Saydi Handley with one point.

This win put the Lady Jackets in a tie for second place with the Goodrich Lady Hornets, forcing a ‘play-in’ between the two schools. The Lady Jackets and the Lady Hornets met up at Leggett High School on Friday, February 10. The Lady Jackets trailed Goodrich the entire game, but were able to come back in the fourth quarter to defeat the Lady Hornets 28-27. Read and Brock each scored seven points, Abby Grimes scored six points, K. Handley scored four points, and Byrd and S. Handley each scored two points.

Junior High Basketball

Both the Chester Jr. High girls and boys teams brought home championship plaques from the High Island Basketball Tournament held on Saturday, Feb. 11.

The junior high girls team chalked up wins against High Island, Odyssey, and Crenshaw to take first place. The girls beat High Island 36-7. Carlen Sluga scored 12 points, Ty Cochran scored eight points, Kayla Glawson and Allie Ogden each scored six points, and Hailey Purvis scored four points.

The Lady Jackets defeated Odyssey 53-14. Cochran scored 24 points, Sluga and Purvis scores 10 points each, Ogden scored seven points, and Tanalyn Knox scored two points. The Jackets also got a big win over Crenshaw 43-5. Scoring for the Lady Jackets were Sluga with 12 points, Cochran with 11 points, Ogden with 10 points, Purvis with six points, and Glawson with four points. This tournament win was a total team effort, and there are big things to come for Chester basketball with this group of athletes.

The junior high boys also were undefeated during the tournament. The boys defeated High Island 36-13. Turner Johnson and Bryson Swanson scored 10 points each, Kasen Citrano scored nine points, Braysen Neal added four points, Jayse Gay scored two points, and Henry David added a free throw. The Yellowjackets beat Odyssey Charter 58-19. Citrano led the team with 18 points, Swanson scored 15 points, Johnson ended the game with 12 points, Neal scored seven points, Gay added five points, and David scored one point. The Jackets outscored Crenshaw 39-6. Neal led the team with 13 points, Citrano scored 10 points, Johnson added eight points, Swanson scored four points, and Gay and David each scored two points apiece. This boys team had a successful season of basketball. They have improved as a team this year.

Lady Jacket Softball

The Chester Lady Jacket softball team got to get a scrimmage in, thanks to Coach Hanks from Woodville High School. Because many of the softball players are still playing basketball, Coach Muncrief just didn’t have the numbers to play. Coach Hanks shared some players and worked together so the Lady Jackets could scrimmage Woodville on Friday, Feb. 10.

Coach Muncrief said the girls enjoyed it and the scrimmage was very helpful for the girls. Both Coach Muncrief and the Lady Jackets are looking forward to competing in the Jasper Tournament Thursday, Feb. 23 through Saturday, Feb. 25. The Lady Jackets are scheduled to play at 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, at 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. on Friday, and at 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Saturday.

Yellowjacket Baseball

Coach Coleman Butter is ready to play ball. The Yellowjackets went deeper in the playoffs last year in Butters first year as head coach than Chester has gone in several years. Butter and his team have been working hard to go even farther this season. The Jackets will travel to Lindale to compete in the Highway 59 Classic, which is held Thursday through Saturday, February 23-25. The Jackets are scheduled to face Liberty Eylau on Thursday at 1:30pm and then Pewitt at 4 p.m. These seed games will determine the bracket for Saturday.

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