Holcomb junior center Jamie Massey is guarded in the paint by Bernie's Sam Turner in the 2012 season.
The boys and girls basketball coaches from Kennett, Holcomb and Senath-Hornersville recently shared their thoughts on the new district assignments that were recently announced for the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 basketball seasons.
The Kennett boys basketball program, which has advanced to the Class 3, District 1, championship the last three seasons and won a district title in 2010, will move up a class this season. Kennett is set to compete in Class 4, District 1, with Sikeston, Perryville, Notre Dame, Dexter and Cape Central for the next two seasons. Sikeston has won Class 4, District 1, the last four seasons and won the Class 4 state title in 2011.
"It's exciting for us to move up a class as our program has shown competitive improvement over the past few years," Kennett boys basketball coach Jim Vaughan said. "It's a new challenge that we are prepared to embrace.
"Just like our old Class 3 district, I believe our new Class 4 district has to be one of the most competitive districts in the state top to bottom," Vaughan continued. "Cape Central has won the Class 5 district title in recent years. Sikeston and Notre Dame have battled it out in Class 4, but nobody can ever look past Dexter or Perryville as their programs know how to compete. And we are going to believe that we will be right in the thick of it.
Senath-Hornersville's Taylor Clifton attempts to block a shot by South Pemiscot's Carrie Shephard in the 2012 season.
The Kennett girls basketball program will compete in Class 4, District 1, with the same teams the Kennett boys basketball program will play. The Dexter girls basketball program has won Class 4, District 1, four of the last five seasons. Kennett's girls won Class 3, District 1, in 2011 and received the No. 1 seeded in Class 3, District 1, in 2012 before suffering an upset-loss to Doniphan in the district semifinals.
"I see the move to Class 4 as a positive challenge for our program," first-year Kennett girls basketball coach Rod Baxter said. "The district competition will be enhanced. Kennett has the smallest student enrollment in Class 4, District 1. We will have to strive to be competitive with our new assignment. The Lady Indians have grit and will give their best effort come district-play."
The Holcomb boys, Senath-Hornersville boys and Senath-Hornersville girls will compete in Class 2, District 1, the next two seasons.
The Class 2, District 1, boys district will feature Bernie, Bloomfield, Campbell, Cooter, Hayti, Holcomb, Portageville, Senath-Hornersville and South Pemiscot. Holcomb placed second in the district last season, dropping the district championship to Hayti, which placed third in the state. Bernie won a Class 2 district title in 2011 and 2010 and placed second at the state final four both seasons.
Kennett's Darby Sparks attempts to push the ball down the court against Dexter's pressure defense in the 2012 season.
The Senath-Hornersville boys basketball program is searching for its first district championship since the 2004 basketball season when it placed third in Class 2. Senath-Hornersville will begin its quest for its seventh district title in boys basketball in school history with a new head coach. David Heeb, who coached at Caruthersville the last three seasons, replaces Shane Jordan who served as boy basketball coach at Senath-Hornersville for three seasons.
"I think we legitimately have three or four teams in our district that can make a run at the final four," Heeb said of Class 2, District 1. "I really believe if things go right for our kids we will be the kind of team you don't want to play in the district. We've got size, good guards and good shooters.
"The only thing you can say about us is we are young, but once upon a time Derek Tipler and those guys at New Madrid County Central were young and they made a run," Heeb continued. "Bobby Hatchett was young when he made a run at Scott County Central. It does happen and I tell these kids every day 'we are going to have a great team here.' It's just a matter of when. If they can turn a corner this year great. If not, we have one senior in our program."
Bloomfield, which was the only boys teams added to Class 2, District 1, does not have a girls basketball program at the varsity level. Therefore, the same Class 2, District 1, girls teams will compete in Class 2, District 1, this season. The South Pemiscot girls won Class 2, District 1, in 2012 and the Senath-Hornersville girls won Class 2, District 1, in 2011.
"It will be a good tournament," Senath-Hornersville girls basketball coach Jamie Johnson said. "We hope to be right in the thick of it. Bloomfield is a great place to play and has great facilities. We've never played at Bloomfield so that will be a new experience for the girls. It always reminds me of the old gymnasium at Hoosiers with the atmosphere. You cannot beat it.
"Competition wise it is wide open," Johnson added. "I know South Pemiscot is probably the front runner because of their personnel, but it's a long season. Anything can happen and we wish everybody a lot of health, us too. I think if everybody stays healthy and we get in good shape we've got a good chance."
Bloomfield will host Class 2, District 1, and Dexter will host Class 4, District 1, this season
View complete district assignments for basketball in all classes in the southeast Missouri region below:
Class 1, District 1, at Gideon: Clarkton, Delta C-7, Gideon, Koshkonong, Naylor, North Pemiscot, Risco, Southland
Class 1, District 2, at Scott County Central: Bell City, Delta, Leopold, McKinley Classical Leadership, Oak Ridge, Richland, Scott County Central, Fulton School at St. Albans
Class 1, District 3, at Bunker: Bunker, Eminence, Lesterville, Marquand-Zion, South Iron, Summersville, Zalma
Class 1, District 4, at Chadwick: Bradleyville, Chadwick, Exeter, Hurley, Lutie, Niangua, Thomas Jefferson Independent, Verona
Class 2, District 1, at Bloomfield: Bernie, Bloomfield, Campbell, Cooter, Hayti, Holcomb, Portageville, Senath-Hornersville, South Pemiscot
Class 2, District 2, at Van Buren: Couch, East Carter County, Greenville, Neelyville, Puxico, Thayer, Van Buren, Winona
Class 2, District 3, at Bismarck: Advance, Bismarck, Chaffee, Meadow Heights, Oran, Southern, Valley, Viburnum
Class 2, District 4, at Crystal City: Barat Academy, Crossroads College Preparatory, Crystal City, Elsberry, Kingston, New Haven, St. Vincent, Valle Catholic
Class 3, District 1, at Malden: Caruthersville, NMCC, Charleston, Doniphan, East Prairie, Kelly, Malden Twin Rivers
Class 3, District 2, at West County: Arcadia Valley, Clearwater, Jefferson, Saxony Lutheran, Scott City, St. Pius X, West County, Woodland
Class 3, District 3, Herculaneum: Carnahan, Cleveland NJROTC, College Preparatory at Madison, Construction Careers Charter, Grandview, Hancock, Herculaneum, Lift for Life Academy Charter
Class 3, District 4, at Lutheran (St. Peters): Brentwood, John Burroughs, John F. Kennedy, Lutheran (St. Peters), Maplewood-Richmond Heights, Principia, Valley Park, Whitfield
Class 4, District 1, at Dexter: Cape Central, Dexter, Kennett, Notre Dame, Perryville, Sikeston
Class 4, District 2, at Park Hills Central: Park Hills Central, Farmington, Fredericktown, North County, Potosi, Ste. Genevieve
Class 4, District 3, at DeSoto: Affton, DeSoto, Festus, Hillsboro, Lutheran South, Windsor (Imperial)
Class 4, District 4, at St. Mary's: Bayless, Bishop DuBourg, Gateway, Roosevelt, St. Mary's (St. Louis)
Class 5, District 1, at Oakville: Fox, Jackson, Oakville, Poplar Bluff, Seckman
Class 5, District 2, at Ladue Horton Watkins: Chaminade, Ladue Horton Watkins, Ritenour, Riverview Gardens, St. Louis University
Class 5, District 3, at Marquette: Eureka, Lafayette, Marquette, Parkway South, Rockwood Summit
Class 5, District 4, at Parkway Central: Christian Brothers College, DeSmet, Parkway Central, Parkway North, Parkway West, Pattonville