Looking back at the sports highlights in the final six months of 2018

Published 8:36 pm Friday, December 28, 2018

EDITORS NOTE: This is the second of a two-part series looking back at the year 2018 in sports around the Greater Valley Area.

June 1

Chambers Academy names Jaylan Reynolds new volleyball coach

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The Rebels named the former high school and college club player as the program’s new leader.

June 9

Valley’s Coby McDonald named to baseball All-State team

McDonald was named to the ASWA 5A All-State second team as a designated hitter. His batting average remained over .400 for most of the season.

June 13

Beulah cheerleading team places first overall at Auburn

The Bobcats only attended one camp this past summer, and the team made the lone trip count. Shayna Teel, Destiny Thomas, Melissa Sanders and Savanna Martin were all recognized as varsity All-Americans from the camp. Abby Higdon, Brandy Phillips and Abbey Darnell were named the junior high cheerleading All-Americans.

June 21

Thomas Hill leaves Springwood to join coaching staff at Valley

Hill left his alma mater to become the ninth grade football head coach at Valley High. The coach announced the move to his former team after a summer workout, Hill said that there wasn’t one dry eye in the room after he made the announcement. Valley varsity head football coach Buster Daniel has previously said the hire was a part of him building up the Rams’ program from youth football onto the varsity level.

June 23

Beulah baseball team makes it to World Series

The Beulah 8 and under All-Star baseball team won this year’s state championship game 20-10. The team outscored opponents 73-32 throughout the tournament, and the victory marked the first team in Beulah recreational history to appear in the World Series.

June 24

Lanett quarterback Kristian Story ranked as No. 1 2020 athlete in Alabama

Rivals.com football recruiting rankings listed the junior quarterback as the top athlete in the state of Alabama. The four-star recruit was originally a verbal commit for the University of Tennessee, however, Story has since re-opened his recruitment options.

July 1

Beulah grad Brumfield returns home to cheer at Point University

After attending Jacksonville State University and eventually being sidelined from cheering after suffering an injury, Abby Brumfield came back home and signed a cheer scholarship at Point University. The Beulah graduate was voted as an All-American in high school.

July 8

West Point softball team wins state championship

The 16 and under West Point All-Star Softball Little League team won the state championship after defeating Vine Eagle 15-8. It was the first championship in Tug Livingston’s 42-year coaching career in youth sports.

July 19

John Gartman becomes Springwood’s new football coach

The longtime AISA veteran John Gartman was hired to fill Thomas Hill’s vacancy a month before the Wildcats’ first game.

July 20

Richard Carter receives award as best coach in Southeast

Lanett boys head basketball coach Richard Carter was honored as the NFHS Section 3 and state coach of the year during the 22nd annual Championship Coaches’ Awards Banquet at the Montgomery Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center. After coaching for 45 years, Carter broke through and won his first state championship in 2016, Lanett has won the last three state championships since.

July 22

West Point baseball team wins World Series

The West Point 18 and under All-Star team won the Dizzy Dean World Series in Mississippi after sweeping South Vinemount in the final series of the tournament. In three games, West Point outscored its opponents 28-6.

Oct. 20

Chambers Academy junior varsity volleyball wins state championship

Freshman Bailey Allen received state tournament MVP honors after the Rebels defeated Cornerstone Christian in straight sets in the final.

Oct. 24

Point men’s soccer clinch regular season conference title

After an upset win over No. 12 Reinhardt, the Skyhawks clinched a regular season conference title after being picked to finish in the bottom half of the conference in the preseason.

Oct. 29

Chambers Academy varsity volleyball team advances to AISA final four

Also led by Bailey Allen and first-year head coach Jaylan Reynolds, the Rebels made it to the state semifinals.

Nov. 3

Tory Wooley wins 100th game with Point women’s basketball

A 68-63 win over Pensacola Christian got sixth-year head coach Tory Wooley his 100th victory at Point University.

Nov. 6

Springwood’s Ramseur commits to Navy

Springwood School senior lineman Chris Ramseur verbally committed to play for Navy. The 6-foot-3, 290-pound prospect also had offers from Morehead State and Mercer University.

Nov. 9

Trikweze Bridges ties all-time state record for career interceptions

In a blowout win against Florala, Lanett senior safety Bridges snatched away his 36th career interception, which tied the all-time record in the state.

Nov. 9

Valley High School plays in playoffs for first time since 2013

In Buster Daniel’s second season at the helm, the Rams saw postseason action for the first time in half a decade.

Nov. 9

Beulah hosts first playoff game in 23 years

The Bobcats took the field for their first playoff game since 2007, and their first home playoff game since 1995 after pulling off an 8-2 record in the regular season.

Nov. 15

Valley shortstop Gracie Landis signs to play college softball

Valley senior shortstop Gracie Landis signed her letter of intent to play at Chattahoochee Valley Community College. Landis batted in the leadoff spot for the Rams last season.

Nov. 16

Chambers Academy wins first football state championship

The Rebels completed an undefeated season and became “small town famous” after defeating Crenshaw in a 22-12 decision at Troy University. The championship came on the 50th anniversary of Chambers Academy and after three consecutive years of coming up short in the title game.

Nov. 27

Greer scores 51 points, grabs 21 rebounds

LaFayette sophomore Feliah Greer had her way against 5A Booker T. Washington. The reigning All-Valley Area Girls Basketball Player of the Year finished with 51 points and 21 rebounds in a 65-55 win.

Dec. 4

Dale named Point’s first volleyball All-American

The senior athlete earned an NAIA All-American honorable mention to become the first Skyhawk to accomplish the feat in program history. She is also the program’s first player to be named the conference player of the year.

Dec. 13

Point football’s McFarland named All-American

Sophomore safety Isaiah McFarland was named an NAIA All-American after grabbing 7 interceptions and racking up 59 tackles this season.

Dec. 19

Trikweze Bridges makes history, signs early to play football at Oregon

The 2018 All-Valley Area Player of the Year becomes the first Panther in history to sign early to play football.

Dec. 23

18 local football players receive all-state nod

Hunter Bryant, Caden Dowdell, Lonzie Portis, C.J. Lyons, Dijon Darden, Alston Knox, Colton Hand, Jordan Gillespie, Payton Allen, Jordan Walker, JaQuavian Boston-Gaines, Trevor Vines, Kristian Story, D’Terrion Glaze, Trikweze Bridges, Lavantae McCullough, Chris Ramseur and O.J. Tolbert were named to the ASWA team.