Monday brings on a new year and as 2017 closes, high school sports once again gave the fans and media something to talk about with spectacular play after play.
Records were set, history made, championships won and the reality of disappointment made for an exciting year.
As an old page is turned to a new, we take a look back at the top high school sports stories from the Star Telegram - happy new year and bring on 2018.
1. THE YEAR OF THE KELLER INDIANS
Can any school top the year Keller had in 2017?
The Indians made history and won multiple championships.
In basketball, the boys team, led by Star-Telegram player of the Year RJ Nembhard, now at TCU, went all the way to San Antonio to play at the state tournament for the first time in program history.
The Lady Indians also made history by going to the regional tournament for the first time.
The train to state wouldn’t stop there as the girls soccer team made it to the state tournament. AK Ward, now at Mississippi State, was voted the Star-Telegram player of the year.
But there’s more!
Looking to defend its 6A state title, the Keller softball team went to Austin and won the crown for the second-straight year.
And add another player of the year award to the mantle as Indians’ pitcher Dylann Kaderka took home the honor.
A few months later, the football team made the playoffs for the first time since 2014 and volleyball was Co-District 3-6A champs for the second-straight year.
Cross country gets into the mix too as the Lady Indians, like softball, made it back-to-back 6A state championships. Texas A&M signee Julia Black won the silver medal and was named the Star-Telegram girls runner of the year.
Swimming went to state, and all golf, tennis and track teams won district titles.
2. MANSFIELD TIMBERVIEW, METROPLEX DOMINATE STATE HOOPS
Come Monday morning, January 1st, 2018, let’s expect both the boys and girls basketball teams at Timberview High School to be atop the Class 5A state rankings.
Both ended 2017 with championship titles in the Whataburger and Spring Creek tournaments. Senior Isaac Likekele and junior Destiny Jackson were named MVPs.
But both teams also went to the state tournament in March.
The Wolves won their first state basketball title while the Lady Wolves were three points away from winning their second.
Chennedy Carter, who’s absolutely lighting up the college basketball world at Texas A&M, was the Star-Telegram player of the year.
Other DFW teams in the boys tournament included winners Lipan, Muenster and Dallas Madison while Keller, Justin Northwest, Dallas Skyline, Argyle, Midlothian Heritage and Brock also made state.
Godley girls had its best season with a trip to state. Argyle won the 4A title while Duncanville took home 6A.
3. FOOTBALL STILL KING IN TEXAS
Star-Telegram teams had a rough going at state last week, but for the most part, the football season was a success.
A few area teams had historic years.
Brock (3A) and Aledo (5A) made it to state again while Kennedale went for the first time. The Wildcats made the state semifinals for the first time in 2016 and bumped it up to the state title game for coach Richard Barrett.
Mansfield Legacy and Richland had their deepest playoff runs in school history and Haltom went to the playoffs for the first time since 2009 and had just its third winning season since 2000.
Mansfield Lake Ridge went to the third round again, Keller Fossil Ridge went undefeated in the regular season and Haslet Eaton clinched a playoff spot in just its second season.
4. COACHING LEGENDS RETIRE
One of the best volleyball coaches all time announced she was hanging up the whistle in January.
After 21 years at Aledo, Kathy Goings called it a career to watch her daughter Maddie Goings play at Oregon State.
The Bearcats never missed the playoffs under Goings, who finished with a career record of 641-200. Aledo went to the state tournament three times, including 2014, 2012 and 2001.
In the spring, Euless Trinity wrapped up what would become Sue Cannon’s final season.
A career lasting four decades, Cannon turned the Lady Trojans into a state contender every year.
Trinity, where Cannon would spend her career since 1986, made the playoffs 15 times in her final 18 seasons, 22 times overall. Cannon would finish with 1,117 wins in her career.
Seven months later, a football coaching legend would also hang it up.
Dale Keeling spent 20 years with the Everman Bulldogs, winning state titles in 2001 and 2002.
The Bulldogs went to the playoffs 17 consecutive seasons from 1999-2015 and again in 2017. They also went to the state semifinals three other times while Keeling won 39 playoff games.
Keeling is in the Top-50 in all time victories with over 230.
5. GRAPEVINE, SOUTHLAKE CARROLL GO TO STATE BASEBALL
In 2016, the Grapevine Mustangs won the Class 5A state title at Dell Diamond in Round Rock.
A year later, they were three runs shy of back-to-back state championships.
The Mustangs went back to the state diamond in June, beat Corpus Christi Moody 3-2 before falling short of Port Neches-Grove 4-2 in the title game.
Let’s not forget the epic season series Grapevine had with rival Colleyville Heritage, not only in the regular season but also in the regional final to get to state.
Southlake Carroll also went to state, thanks to nine-straight wins to open the playoffs. The Dragons defeated Arlington Martin in the regional final before falling to eventual 6A state champ Deer Park at Round Rock.
6. HIGH SCHOOL TEAMS UNITE FOR HARVEY RELIEF
Hurricane Harvey hit the U.S. in August just before the high school football season. The Category 4 nightmare brought more than 51 inches of rain, a record in the continental United States for a single storm event.
Harvey forced schools in Houston, Rockport, Port Aransas, Aransas Pass and Corpus Christi and more much damage. Football teams had to cancel a game or sometimes, multiple games.
A few weeks later, teams around the state started to raise money for those affected.
Fort Worth area schools like Saginaw Boswell, Arlington Lamar, Southlake Carroll, Richland, Justin Northwest, Birdville and many more sent money, can goods and clothes.
Even Houston Texan J.J. Watt help raise nearly $30 million.
7. EULESS TRINITY WRESTLER SPARKS CONTROVERSY
Mack Beggs, a 17-year-old transgender boy from Euless Trinity, won the Class 6A state title in the girls 110-pound division in February.
Now more than a year after starting testosterone treatment that is transforming his physical appearance and increasing muscle mass, Beggs was required by the UIL to compete as a girl and against girls.
More than 600 Texas school district superintendents voted nearly unanimously last year to determine gender by birth certificate, forcing Beggs to face girls despite taking testosterone.
Beggs defeated Chelsea Sanchez of Katy Morton Ranch 12-1 to win the championship and finished the season 56-0.
FW All Saints football, Nolan Catholic softball reach TAPPS Final Four
Aledo girls, Arlington Sam Houston boys soccer teams state runner ups
Sam Houston’s Jose Ortiz, Prosper’s Diana Ordonez named Texas Gatorade players of the year
Grapevine boys cross country wins regional meet
Muenster does the trifecta, wins state in basketball, baseball and football
Allen football wins fifth state title
Prosper volleyball wins 5A title
Aledo’s Graydon Morris wins regional, state meet, second at Nationals
Keller girls cross country wins regionals
Aledo, Glen Rose reach volleyball state tournament
Grapevine girls wins 5A golf state title
Southlake Carroll boys win 6A swimming state title
Krum, The Colony softball teams win state titles
Grapevine goes to state team tennis
FW Paschal sophomore Shauna Galvin goes back to state tennis
Carroll’s Reed Brown shines in track and field, runs sub-4:00 mile
Grapevine’s Brian Andrews wins third straight wrestling title
Arlington Bowie’s Taylor Parks, Keller Central’s Blaine Martinez, Arlington Martin’s Luke Garcia, Justin Northwest’s Michael Kumlien, Azle’s Hali Davis, Azle’s Alexis Hanna, FW Carter Riverside’s Jackie Bunyavong, Arlington’s Asia Ray, Arlington Sam Houston’s Destiny Dominguez, Arlington’s Victoria Nnazoba, Arlington Sam Houston’s Lis Bennett win wrestling state titles
LD Bell’s Kyleigh Prather All-Around state champ in gymnastics, Alexis Martin back-to-back floor champion
Photos of the Year
Male Athlete of the Year
Female Athlete of the Year
Players of the Year
Volleyball: Kaitlyn Rogers, Weatherford
Boys Basketball: RJ Nembhard, Keller
Girls Basketball: Chennedy Carter, Timberview
Baseball: Alex Scherff, Colleyville Heritage
Softball: Dylann Kaderka, Keller
Boys Soccer: Jose Ortiz, Sam Houston
Girls Soccer: AK Ward, Keller
Boys Cross Country: Graydon Morris, Aledo
Girls Cross Country: Julia Black, Keller
*Football winners will be announced at later date