The winter sports programs will find championships tough to come by also. New head boys basketball coach Jeff Embrey may have the best chance to bring home a title. His guard dominated team may be able to make some noise but it won’t be easy, especially since the district tournament will be held at Livingston. Also district foes will be gunning for the Wildcats who lost seven seniors from last year’s squad.
Since 1979 all of Trigg County High’s sports programs have experienced some post-season success. Girls golf has won a region title and boys golf have been region runner-up. Boys and girls cross-country won state titles. Wildcat football has won district and region titles, even advancing to the state finals once. The boys and girls basketball teams have produced district titles with the boys even winning the coveted region in 1997. The power-lifting team has won many state championships. Boys and girls track has won state titles. Girls softball even won a district title years ago. Our new archery program has taken it a step further and won a national title. There is only one Trigg County athletic team that is without a title over the past 25 yearts.
Now that you have all of the above information, it is time for my grandest prediction of the year. It has been 25 long seasons since Trigg County last won a district championship in baseball. The year was 1979. Many players, coaches and fans have tried to make it happen but could not get it done. I am going to say it now. Trigg County will win the district in baseball this year. Why am I making such a bold prediction for a program that has suffered a 25 year drought?
First, last year’s Trigg County’s team was very close to being good enough to win. They were a contender but could not get over the hump.
Secondly, native son Jackie Sholar returns to the diamond as head baseball coach. Sholar was a standout player on Trigg’s last championship team in 1979. He was a star pitcher and hitter and led Trigg to a 3-2 victory over Hopkinsville in the championship game. Sholar, who went on to play at Austin Peay State University, has excellent knowledge of the game. He is also is one of the most competitive people on the planet. Therefore, it is my prediction that he will drive the players to be successful. Sholar will just be coaching one sport, baseball, which will allow him to spend more time with the program than coaches have in the past.
Thirdly, Trigg has a host of veteran players who have a lot of experience. Among those players are Seniors Kyle Allen and John David Fourqurean who are both excellent leaders. Iron man pitcher Lucas Riddle returns to the mound to give the Cats a workhorse pitcher. There are several young players who showed great promise last year also.
Lastly, the Batcats have a great parental support network. The new Baseball Diamond Club has raised enough funds to ensure a first class program this season. Parents can be a great plus for a sports program or a huge negative. If this years baseball parents will work as hard on their game behavior and conduct as they have fund raising they will go down as one of the best support groups ever. What does game behavior mean? Stay off the umpires. Make Trigg County a place where the umpires want to call. You will probably get more breaks that way. Support the coach and the decisions he makes. He is looking out for the success of the team and not just thinking about your individual child. Also support all the players whether they win or lose. With this year’s schedule there will be some losses. It is what is learned from those losses that will produce a championship later.
To read the conclusion of this column, pick up the latest edition of The Cadiz Record.