Sports

Fri
25
Jul
Mike Russo's picture

Lady Lobos continue progressing

MARQUIS CHAVEZ, left, of La Joya defends a Copper Canyon player during a Jan. 17 contest. Chavez is among a group of last year’s underclassmen returning this year for coach Aaron Dille. View file photo by Ray Thomas
MARQUIS CHAVEZ, left, of La Joya defends a Copper Canyon player during a Jan. 17 contest. Chavez is among a group of last year’s underclassmen returning this year for coach Aaron Dille. View file photo by Ray Thomas

Last season was a difficult one for La Joya’s youthful girls basketball team, but progress was evident by season’s end.

That trend continued during summer play.

The Lady Lobos went 2-26 last season in Aaron Dille’s second year at the helm.

Fri
25
Jul
Mike Russo's picture

Former Millennium star remains optimistic

TYLER RUSSELL handles the ball for Houston Baptist University against the University of Texas at Arlington during the 2012-13 season. Russell is hoping for a successful senior season with the Huskies. Photo courtesy of Houston Baptist University
TYLER RUSSELL handles the ball for Houston Baptist University against the University of Texas at Arlington during the 2012-13 season. Russell is hoping for a successful senior season with the Huskies. Photo courtesy of Houston Baptist University

Russell works hard to overcome adversity

Tyler Russell, a 2011 graduate of Millennium High School, has gotten an education outside the classroom while playing basketball at Houston Baptist University.

The former Tigers’ star has had to learn how to deal with considerable adversity.

Fri
25
Jul
Casey Pritchard's picture

Brown takes detours to Wagner College in NYC

MORGAN BROWN pitches for Verrado May 6 against Queen Creek in the Division II state tournament. Brown has committed to playing collegiate softball at Wagner College. View file photo by Ray Thomas
MORGAN BROWN pitches for Verrado May 6 against Queen Creek in the Division II state tournament. Brown has committed to playing collegiate softball at Wagner College. View file photo by Ray Thomas

Morgan Brown thought she knew where she was headed to play collegiate softball, but a coaching change ended up altering the Verrado graduate’s destination by nearly 900 miles.

Brown, the Lady Vipers’ ace for the past three years, was supposed to go to Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tenn., but head coach Jeff Dabney was not retained in May following the 2014 season, making things uneasy for Brown.

Fri
25
Jul
Casey Pritchard's picture

D.E. has one of its best offseasons

DESERT EDGE’S AISHA THOMAS, left, takes the ball to the basket last season against Sierra Linda. Thomas is one of the Lady Scorpions’ core returning players. View file photo by Ray Thomas
DESERT EDGE’S AISHA THOMAS, left, takes the ball to the basket last season against Sierra Linda. Thomas is one of the Lady Scorpions’ core returning players. View file photo by Ray Thomas

Desert Edge girls basketball coach Heidi Behnke was really pleased with her team’s summer activity.

It’s probably been one of the most-successful summers we’ve had since I’ve been here,” Behnke said.

Contributing to that was a good turnout of sophomores and juniors. Also, the number of athletes participating stayed consistent throughout the summer.

Tue
22
Jul
Casey Pritchard's picture

Verrado racks up wins during summer play

Verrado had a trying season in 2013-14, winning just seven of its 24 games. This summer had a much different look to it for the Vipers.

Verrado played in two tournaments and combined to go 10-3, finishing as runners-up at Youngker.

We had a great couple tournaments,” Verrado coach Tim Butler said. “The kids really came together and played really, really well.”

Tue
22
Jul
Casey Pritchard's picture

Nomadic Kloppe still pursues dream

BRYAN KLOPPE peers in at the catcher for the sign while pitching for the Brownsville Charros of the United League earlier this summer.
BRYAN KLOPPE peers in at the catcher for the sign while pitching for the Brownsville Charros of the United League earlier this summer.
BRYAN KLOPPE, a 2008 graduate of Millennium High School, pitches for the Brownsville Charros of the United League this summer.
BRYAN KLOPPE, a 2008 graduate of Millennium High School, pitches for the Brownsville Charros of the United League this summer.

After graduating from Kansas Christian University in 2012, Bryan Kloppe embarked on a journey that would have made Odysseus proud.

Kloppe’s travels took him from Manhattan Kan., to Topeka, Kan., Yuma, Ariz., Edinburg, Texas, Brownsville, Texas, and Roswell, N.M., all in the pursuit of his dream.

Tue
22
Jul
Casey Pritchard's picture

Busy summer prepares Wolverines

TOLLESON’S TRAYVON SMITH, right, grabs a pass against La Joya last season. Smith had a solid summer at wide receiver and free safety for the Wolverines.
TOLLESON’S TRAYVON SMITH, right, grabs a pass against La Joya last season. Smith had a solid summer at wide receiver and free safety for the Wolverines.

Tolleson lost the core of its backfield to graduation following last year’s 8-2 record and playoff berth, but the Wolverines still have a talented group that has been working hard this summer.

Tolleson competed in four passing-league tournaments and participated in Desert Edge’s big-man competitions throughout the month of June. The Wolverines finished second overall in that.

Tue
22
Jul
Mike Russo's picture

The passing of a West Valley coaching legend

Wayne DesCombes
Wayne DesCombes

The West Valley has lost one of its treasures.

It was not an inanimate object that was lost. It was a person – a baseball coach. Not just a baseball coach, but to many, “The Coach.”

Longtime baseball coaching legend Wayne DesCombes, 79, died July 17, following a brief battle with cancer.

Tue
22
Jul
Mike Russo's picture

Knights’ progress encourages new coach

RAMEIKH BOWLES rips off yardage last season for Westview against Boulder Creek. Bowles returns for his senor year after gaining 534 rushing yards and scoring nine touchdowns last year.
RAMEIKH BOWLES rips off yardage last season for Westview against Boulder Creek. Bowles returns for his senor year after gaining 534 rushing yards and scoring nine touchdowns last year.

It has been a period of acclimation for Westview’s new head football coach, but not too much.

Joe Parker takes over the reins from Jeff Bowen, who resigned earlier this year after 11 seasons at the helm to become assistant head coach, run-game coordinator and offensive line coach at Arizona Christian University.

Fri
18
Jul
Mike Russo's picture

Former Tiger makes transition to college hoops

JORDAN MARTIN, right, drives the baseline for Millennium Jan. 21, 2013, against Westview at Grand Canyon University. Martin enjoyed a solid freshman season at Cochise College, averaging 17.3 points per game.
JORDAN MARTIN, right, drives the baseline for Millennium Jan. 21, 2013, against Westview at Grand Canyon University. Martin enjoyed a solid freshman season at Cochise College, averaging 17.3 points per game.
JORDAN MARTIN, center, puts up a shot in the lane for Millennium against Desert Edge during the 2012-13 season. Martin saw his scoring average climb as his minutes increased last season as a Cochise College freshman.
JORDAN MARTIN, center, puts up a shot in the lane for Millennium against Desert Edge during the 2012-13 season. Martin saw his scoring average climb as his minutes increased last season as a Cochise College freshman.

It was not the easiest transition from high school to college basketball but Jordan Martin persevered and thrived by season’s end.

Martin, a 2013 graduate of Millennium High School, was a two-year starter for the Tigers, averaging a team-leading 19.3 points per game as a senior.

Last season, as a freshman at Cochise College in Douglas, he found himself behind a sophomore shooting guard and his role was initially diminished.

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