Author: Evan Ren

BCP BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AND SUPER DOZEN: Yeager claims top spot

On the heels of announcing our first-ever Big Country Preps Girls Athlete of the Year, it’s now time to announce our first boys winner.

Again, our Athlete of the Year and subsequent “Super Dozen” represent the Big Country Athletes who contributed the most to their athletic programs — most often over a broad range of disciplines. 

So, at this time, Big Country Preps proudly announces its Boys Athlete of the Year: Kevin Yeager of De Leon. 

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BCP GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AND SUPER DOZEN: Masonheimer takes top spot

An Athlete of the Year award for the Big Country has been a long time coming, and Big Country Preps is officially ending the wait. 

What better way to end our first school year than by honoring our top all-around athletes. By that, we mean those athletes who competed at a high level over a broad range of disciplines and had the biggest overall impact on their athletic programs (as nominated by area athletic directors). 

So without further ado, we proudly announce our first Big Country Preps Girls Athlete of the Year: Anna Masonheimer of Eula. 

From start to finish, Masonheimer was a key contributor to Eula’s athletic success during the 2018-19 school year, beginning with her helping the EHS cross country team reach the regional meet. 

She was the MVP of Eula’s district champion basketball team, earning all state honors from both the Texas Association of Basketball coaches and the Texas Girls Coaches Association. But she was just getting started at that point. 

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STATE 7-ON-7: Dublin, Brady win their pools on Day 1 in College Station

Shay Easterwood

COLLEGE STATION — With 64 teams hitting the field on Day 1 of the Texas State 7-on-7 Championships, the picture became a bit clearer by day’s end, though not a single team was eliminated. 

All 32 teams in both the Division II and Division III tournaments were guaranteed a spot in the championship round, with Thursday’s pool play serving as a means to seed the entirety of both events at Veterans Park and Athletic Complex.

Big Country representatives Dublin and Brady had the biggest days among area teams, both of which won their pools to earn a No. 1 seed on Friday. 

The Division I competition (Classes 5A and 6A)  will get underway on Friday without a single Big Country team in the field. 

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FEATURE: Lipsey still sees value in 7-on-7 as his Bearcats head to state

With the State 7-on-7 Tournament rapidly approaching, the game does have its share of detractors who insist the hyped-up version of “touch” football  can teach players bad habits. 

Some head football coaches don’t even attend the games, and college coaches aren’t allowed to.

So, while some may be tempted to ask the question if 7-on-7 is actually worth the investment, others insist that it is. 

Count Ballinger head football coach Chuck Lipsey among the latter. 

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Big Country Preps Baseball-Softball All-Hustle Team: Our hardest-working players!

OTHER 2019 ALL-BIG COUNTRY PREPS TEAMS

Our All-Big Country Preps Softball and Baseball Teams, released Friday and Saturday, respectively, are in place to honor those who achieved the most on-field success in 2019. It is off the field, however, where character, grit, and work ethic are often measured. And it is with our Big Country Preps All-Hustle Team that we wish to honor those players, male and female, who were (simply put) the hardest-working, best teammates in the area this spring. 

This team isn’t about who the best baseball and softball players were.

The All-Hustle team honors effort, discipline, toughness, coachability and selflessness — traits that coaches wish they had in every player and upon which championships are built.

It is for that reason that this team is largely selected by area coaches and described in their own words.

Big Country Preps is now honored to present these individuals to you — the best team players (boys and girls) that the the Big Country had to offer during the 2019 season.

The players below are listed in no particular order. 

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2018-19 IN REVIEW: Softball (w/ two photo galleries)

Prior to the release of our All-Big Country Preps softball and baseball teams on Friday and Saturday, Evan Ren and Daniel Youngblood will review the 2018-19 school year throughout this week and the top athletic stories produced by the area in football, boys and girls basketball, baseball and softball.

I’ve got a soft spot in my heart for fastpitch softball — I admit it. 

A long time ago, it was common for men to play the game. My dad played it. I played it. So I still thoroughly enjoy getting to as many girls softball games as possible — just to see some fastpitch again.

So, it is with pleasure that I review the the 2019 season — the top teams, the top games, the top surprises and the clubs that are about to make a splash in 2020.

 That said, it’s time to dive in.

Continue reading “2018-19 IN REVIEW: Softball (w/ two photo galleries)”

2018-19 IN REVIEW: Girls basketball (w/ two photo galleries)

Prior to the release of our All-Big Country Preps softball and baseball teams on Friday and Saturday, Evan Ren and Daniel Youngblood will review the 2018-19 school year throughout this week and the top athletic stories produced by the area in football, boys and girls basketball, baseball and softball.

Our review of the 2018-19 athletic school year continues today with girls basketball, which, while it didn’t produce a state title for the Big Country, was never boring. 

It is a long-standing Big Country hoops tradition to be very strong in both Class 1A and Class 3A girls basketball, and last season was no exception. 

The area sent two representatives (Wall and Hermleigh) to the state tournament in San Antonio, continuing the area’s stronghold in both classes.

That said, let’s not waste time. Let’s dive in and take a look at the season’s highlights, shall we?

Continue reading “2018-19 IN REVIEW: Girls basketball (w/ two photo galleries)”

2018-19 IN REVIEW: Football (w/ two photo galleries)

Prior to the release of our All-Big Country Preps softball and baseball teams on Friday and Saturday, Evan Ren and Daniel Youngblood will review the 2018-19 school year throughout this week and the top athletic stories produced by the area in football, boys and girls basketball, baseball and softball.

Before we dive into last football season, let me begin with a quick thank you. With a full year now in the books, BigCountryPreps.com enjoyed a successful first campaign, and that is entirely due to you — the Big Country sports fan. 

We are already chomping at the bit to begin our second year in business and we’ll be preparing our 2019 Football Preview throughout much of the summer, with a release date set for mid-August.

Which brings us to the subject at hand. 

Midway through the 2018 football campaign, Daniel Youngblood and myself were already concurring that it was one of the strangest seasons we had ever experienced. And by December, I felt compelled to write about that very fact

Here’s a quick sample: At various points, 2018 produced a 7-0 Dublin team, a 13-0 San Saba team and 1-9 clubs from Sweetwater and Goldthwaite. How’s that for a reversal of recent history?

Continue reading “2018-19 IN REVIEW: Football (w/ two photo galleries)”

PHOTO GALLERY: 7-on-7 Division III state qualifying tournament (93 images)

Photos may be purchased for $7 each by clicking on the small shopping cart emblem below the lower right corner of the gallery. Our company watermark “BigCountryPreps.com” will be removed from all purchased photos.

RELATED STORIES/GALLERIES

GROUND-ORIENTED WINTERS NEARLY PASSES ITS WAY TO STATE TOURNEY

JIM NED QUALIFIES FOR STATE ON ITS HOME FIELD 

PHOTO GALLERY: DIVISION II STATE QUALIFIER AT JIM NED

 

7-ON-7 FOOTBALL: Ground-oriented, option-loving Winters nearly passes way to state tourney

On a typical Friday evening in the fall, the Winters football team may throw the ball five times — 10 if desperate measures are required.

The flexbone-based Blizzards under coach Matt McCarty have made their living on the ground, reaching the playoffs for two straight years via the triple option. 

Nonetheless, McCarty saw fit to include his team in the annual statewide 7-on-7 competition, a pass-only “touch” football game meant to hone high school passing games to a fine edge over the summer. 

It subsequently stunned nearly everyone in attendance Friday at McMurry University, coming within a victory of passing its way to the Division III state tournament in College Station. 

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EVAN REN: Good football or not, FCA All-star game delivers on its true aim

Send me to a baseball, softball or basketball all-star game and I’m all-in. 

Along those lines, you could send me to an all-star curling match and I’d gladly go. 

But football?

The mere mention of an all-star gala surrounding pigskin makes me cringe because I know what I’m in for: Bad snaps. False starts. Rusty tackling. Blown assignments and dropped passes (if and when the passes are on target).

And since it’s impractical to stage a football all-star game at any other time but the summer, you can usually add 95-100 degree heat to the aforementioned list of attractions. 

Saturday’s 60-13 win by the Blue team over the Red in this year’s FCA Myrle Greathouse All-Star Classic at Shotwell Stadium pretty well drives home the point I’m about to make. 

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