The 2016-2017 school year proved to be a good one for Mansfield High School’s sports programs, and with multiple athletes returning, next year could be even better.
The Mansfield football team went undefeated in district competition to claim the 4-6A district title and advanced to the regional quarterfinals in the playoffs.
The Tigers defeated Keller Fossil Ridge in the bi-district round and Amarillo Tascosa at area to reach the third round and finish 10-3 on the season.
The boys basketball team also reached the postseason in 2017 school year, and coach Jason Speakes said it was a resurgent season for Mansfield.
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“Tiger basketball re-established itself in 2016-2017,” Speakes said. “After a lengthy drought without a playoff berth, the Tigers put together our best year in seven seasons by once again earning the opportunity to play in the postseason.
I played and graduated from Mansfield, so it was an incredible opportunity for me to come back to the school and program.
Assistant girls soccer coach Heather Primavera
“Along the way, we were able to beat traditional powers such as Summit, Flower Mound Marcus, Bowie, and Martin. Those types of signature wins gave our guys tremendous confidence to achieve the level of success we enjoyed in 2016-2017.”
Speakes said that his team was led by wing Garrett Shaw, who was a first-team all district selection and recently accepted a scholarship to play college ball at McLennan Community College in Waco.
Mansfield swimmer Sara McLendon finished sixth at state in the girls 500 freestyle event with a time of 4:57.42.
The Mansfield girls soccer team had a strong season, as well, winning a district championship and advancing to the regional quarterfinals.
The Lady Tigers defeated Abilene at bi-district and Odessa at area to reach the third round of the postseason.
“This year was a fantastic one for both our varsity and JV teams,” assistant coach Heather Primavera said. “It was also a very neat and special year for me. I played and graduated from Mansfield, so it was an incredible opportunity for me to come back to the school and program.
“As I expected, they are an impressive team with loads of talent. I believe our JV team could beat a lot of varsity teams out there. JV went undefeated all year and only had two goals scored against.”
Senior Hannah Webb was named the District MVP for the Lady Tigers.
Jillian Johnson finished fifth at the state track and field meet in the girls high jump event with a mark of 5-06.00, while the boys 4X200 relay team won a bronze medal with a time of 1:24.47.
The softball team finished second in district competition this season and defeated Abilene in the opening round of the playoffs to qualify for area.
In baseball, the Tigers improved from a mark of 13-13-2 in 2016 to a 22-9-1 record this past season, and coach Randy Davis said he was quite pleased with how things unfolded.
“I believe this team’s success was a result of great team chemistry, outstanding senior leadership and the willingness to compete each and every day,” Davis said.
Marino also participated in the North Texas High School Coaches Association All-Star game.