DISTRICT ALIGNMENT

Brook Hill athletics minimally affected by new district lines

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Similar to its public school counterpart, the Universal Interscholastic League (UIL), the governing body for Texas private schools recently redrew the district boundary lines for several sports, which will affect athletics at The Brook Hill School for the next two school years.

According to Brook Hill Athletic Director Wally Dawkins, although the lines have been changed somewhat for several sports, there’s a sense of familiarity due to the differences in number of opponents competing under the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools umbrella.

“In all the years I was under the UIL as a public school coach, because there are a lot of schools involved, sometimes the change would be more drastic,” said Dawkins. “In TAPPS, it’s pretty consistent; we’re probably always going with the Tyler-are schools, as well as maybe the southeastern corner of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. TAPPS alignments aren’t that drastic, but it still affects scheduling. It’s always nice to know who we’re going to face.”

The new realignments by TAPPS were released recently on the organization’s website, with new lines drawn for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 season in the sport of football, volleyball, basketball, winter soccer, baseball, softball, and individual sports (golf, track, and cross country).

In the sport of football, the Brook Hill Guard varsity football team, led by head coach Scott Ryle, will continue to face familiar district opponents in Class 5A Division 2 11-man football, including the Cedar Hill Trinity Christian, Dallas Christian, Bishop T.K. Gorman, and Grace Community.

The most notable changes in the Guard’s district opponents for the next two years are the omission of Tyler All Saints Episcopal, a team that surprised many last year with its decision to pursue an independent schedule, as well as the addition of McKinney Christian.

“Our football district is going to be one tough district for the next two years,” said Dawkins. “Cedar Hill Trinity Christian is a former State Champion, Dallas Christian made it all the way to the semifinals, and Grace and Gorman are always good tough opponents. We didn’t have the sort of year we were expecting to have this season, but hopefully we’ll improve and be able to compete against our tough district opponents.”

According to Dawkins, the proximenty of several teams in the district depletes the opportunity for athletes looking for a place to play to choose where to attend school.

“If you look at schools like Dallas Christian, McKinney Christian, and Cedar Hill Trinity Christian and the populations and areas they draw athletes from, if a player doesn’t play the right position at a public high school, those teams have a wider area to find players from. Whereas here locally, there are four TAPPS schools within a 20-mile area and we’re all drawing from the same pool, which in turn ends up hurting us.”

In the first year of the previous district alignment, the Brook Hill Guard varsity football team finished the 2016 campaign with an overall record of 6-4, 2-4 in district play. The team advanced to the first round of the TAPPS Division II 4A playoffs, where they were defeated by the Midland Christian Mustangs.

The team ended its 2017 campaign with an overall record of 3-6, 1-4 in district play, missing the cut for the TAPPS playoffs.

For volleyball, the Brook Hill lady Guard varsity volleyball team, under the direction of head coach Candise Wise, was placed in a smaller Class 5A District 3 district for the 2018-2020 TAPPS alignment, which will also include Dallas Christian, Bishop Gorman, and Grace Community.

In their first year within the former district lines, the Lady Guard varsity volleyball team finished the 2016 campaign with an overall record of 16-10, 3-3 in district play, and was the second place team in the district. The team advanced to the playoffs and was defeated by Dallas Christian in the first round.

In the 2017 season, the team ended with an overall record of 7-19-1, 2-4 in district play, and was recognized as Bi-District qualifiers. The team was defeated in three sets in the Bi-District contest against the Fort Worth Christian Lady Cardinals.

In the sport of basketball, the Guard and Lady Guard varsity basketball programs will be in Class 5A District 3, along with Dallas Christian, Bishop Gorman, and Grace Community.

The Lady Guard varsity basketball team, previously under head coach Ivan Johnson, ended its 2016-2017 season with an overall record of 8-18, 2-4 in district play. Brook Hill was defeated in the first round of the playoffs by Cedar Hill Trinity Christian.

As of deadline, the team, now under the coaching of head coach Stephanie Williams, holds a 6-13 overall record, 0-5 in district play.

As for the Guard varsity basketball team, under head coach Jacob Agnew, the team finished up the 2016-2017 season with an overall record of 11-16, 2-4 in district play, The team was defeated in the Area round of the playoffs by the All Saints Trojans, 54-38.

Currently, the team holds an overall record of 17-10, 3-2 in district play on the 2017-2018 season.

Brook Hill Guard and Lady Guard winter soccer teams will also compete as members of Class 5A Division 2 District 3 under the parameters of the new district alignment, facing opponents such as Dallas Christian, Bishop Gorman, and Grace Community.

The Guard varsity soccer team, with head coach David Collins, currently holds an overall record of 9-2-1, 5-1 in district play, and has advanced to the TAPPS playoffs, while the Lady Guard varsity soccer program, led by head coach Becky Knight, finished the 2017-2018 season recently with a 4-8-1 overall record, 0-6 in district play.

For the Brook Hill Guard varsity baseball program, led by newly announced interim head coach Austin Reed, as well as the Lady Guard varsity softball program, coached by head coach Anthony Springer, the teams will take part in Class 5A Division 2 District 2 play, battling against teams including Carrollton Prince of Peace, Cedar Hill Trinity Christian, Dallas Christian, Bishop Gorman, and Grace Community.

In the 2017 season, the Brook Hill Guard varsity baseball team, previously under head coach Brock Lemire, achieved an overall record of 16-10, 7-2 in district play, as was recognized as the Area Champions. The team was eliminated in the Regional round by the Fort Worth Christian Cardinals.

Springer’s 2017 Lady Guard varsity softball team finished with an overall record of 21-8, 6-0 in district play, and recognition as District Champions and Area Champions. The team advanced to the Regional contest, where they were defeated by the Fort Worth Christian Lady Cardinals.

To wrap up the new 2018-2020 alignment, the Brook Hill Guard and Lady Guard varsity golf, track and field, and cross country programs will compete in Class 5A District 3, along with Dallas Christian, Bishop Gorman, and Grace Community.

According to Dawkins, several of the Brook Hill athletic programs are strong, with others needing work to compete in the new districts.

“Every school has their niche,” said Dawkins. “Usually baseball and softball are strong sports for us, as well as boys and girls soccer and boys basketball. We’ve got to made improvements in both volleyball and girls basketball. Dallas Christian is like the top school in many of these districts because they’re pretty good at everything. It’s going to be a tougher road for some of our programs. We’re going to have to improve tremendously. We’ve had a lot of success, but have seemingly hit a rut; I think the grind of playing bigger schools has worn on us over time. Just like other schools, we need more athletes; we’re doing what we can to develop what we currently have. We hope to remain competitive and attractive to athletes looking for a good quality Christian education.”

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