Westview keeps bar set high
Posted: Wednesday, July 4, 2012 12:00 pm
By RANDY CAVIN
It is no secret Westview High School sets the bar on a high scale when it comes to sports in Weakley County. At the school, it starts with football.
Under the guidance of head coach Don Coady for the last 21 years, the Chargers are always in the hunt for a district title, and 2011 was no different. Although it was somewhat of a down year by Westview standards, they still made the playoffs with a 6-4 overall record and 4-3 in District 13-AA.
What is perhaps one of the toughest districts in West Tennessee, the Chargers reeled off three consecutive wins to close out the regular season and make the playoffs with a first round win at Camden. The Chargers were eliminated in the second round at Milan.
But how did Westview turn its season around after struggling to find its offense in the early part of the season? Athletic Director Jeromy Davidson says it was with teamwork and dedication that turned it around.
“Our student-athletes, coaches and parents never cease to amaze me,” Davidson said. “They all work so hard to be better and to make us better. Success is not always measured in wins and losses, even though that is the way most look at sports. Winning the last three games in a row to make the playoffs was great. Also, a big win at Camden in the first round of the playoffs was a big highlight.”
The football program cannot take all of the glory at Westview, not as long as the Lady Chargers soccer team keeps on winning as they did in 2011 with a 16-4 record. The Lady Chargers were dominating on the soccer field throughout the 2011 campaign and made it to the sectionals for the second consecutive year. Davidson says it all revolves around head coach Matt Cupples and what the girls learn from him.
“The girls’ had another great season,” Davidson said. “The last two years they have been to the state sectionals. They have really bought in to what coach Cupples is doing, and it has paid off tremendously.”
Westview also boasted one of the area’s top boys’ basketball teams.
The Chargers, led by head coach J.B. Suiter, finished the 2011-12 season with a 23-7 record, finished second in the District 13AA tournament and made it to the Region 7AA quarterfinals.
Davidson says it is the competition in a tough district that helps to make the Chargers even more competitive.
“There were some really good boys’ basketball teams in our district last year,” he said.
“Being competitive is always good when you are playing those caliber teams. We won some big games. Finishing behind Covington was not a bad place to be. Hosting the first round of the region was great. The crowd was fantastic, one of the best I have seen in my five years at Westview.”
The Lady Chargers’ basketball team, built on tradition and the ability of girls who want to win consistently, did not have the year Westview has become accustomed to. But, the young squad and still managed to finish second in the district tournament and reach the semifinals in the regional tournament. The Lady Chargers wrapped up the season with a 20-12 record.
“We knew going in this year that we would be young on the floor,” Davidson said. “In most games, we started a freshman, two sophomores and, depending on the lineup that night, two juniors or one junior and one senior. The girls played hard all year. The good news is, most everyone is back.”
Westview is loaded with quality teams in all sports, and that includes the boys’ soccer team. Once again, under 17-year head coach Dan Scates, the Chargers were at the top of their game.
They were the top seed in the regional tournament and finished second behind Dyersburg, making it to the sectionals.
“The boys’ soccer team has made it to the state sectionals the last two years and lost both times to eventual state runner-up Kingsbury,” Davidson said. “Coach Scates does a great job with the guys. They enjoy playing for him.”
One cannot mention the softball team without talking about pitching, and the first person’s name to come up is Meagan Prince. The Lady Chargers’ success last season revolved around her and her ability to keep the team in position to win games. Prince had 12 shutouts, four no-hitters and a perfect game against Gibson County. She finished 21-6 with 313 strikeouts and an astonishing 0.73 ERA.
Under first year head coach Jessica Hightower, who knows a thing or two about pitching herself, the Lady Chargers went 22-10-1 and were one of the best teams in northwest Tennessee.
“We have had such great success in softball for many years,” Davidson said. “I know this year we weren’t as successful as we have been in others, but we’re a young team. Meagan had another great year, and I anticipate all the girls will come back this year with a renewed desire to win.”
The baseball team, bound and determined throughout the season, began with some big wins before cooling off toward the end of the season. Davidson says a key play here and there going the Chargers’ way, the season might have had a different outcome.
“The baseball team came out this year hot,” he said. “A break or two here and there and we are probably second going into the district tournament instead of fourth. They were very resilient. The kids played hard all year long.”
The tennis program at Westview is young, but both the boys and girls proved last season that they could play against any established program and be competitive to the end.
“The tennis teams have had great success,” Davidson said. “I do not look for that to diminish at all. The kids work hard and always are wanting to get better. The future does indeed look bright.”
Westview has had a premier athletics program for many years now, and the 2011-12 school year was no different. Davidson says it could not be that way if it were not for the students, parents, coaches, faculty and fans.
“Westview athletic teams had a great deal of success this past year,” he said. “These student-athletes are always striving to get better. Our coaches are working hard in their offseasons to prepare for next school year. We look forward to another great year in sports at Westview. Our fans and community are fantastic. They support our kids with their time, energy, and in any fundraiser we have. I would like to say a huge thank you to them for all they do.” Published in The WCP 7.3.12
Westview keeps bar set high