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The Varsitys

Awarding the year's best in Celina, Prosper athletics (Part II)

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Kristin Cole

Celina head girls basketball coach Kristin Cole led the Lady Bobcats to the playoffs in her first season at the helm of the program.

Wednesday marked the 27th ESPY Awards, the annual ceremony devoted to honoring standout professional and collegiate athletes and teams of the past year.

It’s the sports equivalent to the Oscars or Grammys, so why not put a high school spin on the concept?

Over the past school year, the Celina, Prosper area has showcased no shortage of notable individual and team athletic achievements, so it is only appropriate to put the last season of local citywide sports into an award-winning perspective. In the coming weeks, the city’s top athletes, teams and games will be recognized among nine different awards.

With that said, Star Local Media presents Part II of the seventh edition of The Varsitys.

Best Performance

Jordyn Oliver’s 52-point outburst vs. Cedar Park Vista Ridge

The Baylor signee was the No. 1-ranked player in Texas last season for a reason, and her ability to take over any game on both the offensive and defensive ends was a sight to see.

Whether it was in the postseason or in an epic district showdown against the likes of Allen or Plano Senior, Oliver always showed up to play.

However, one of her more dazzling performances came in the preseason when the Lady Eagles were matched up with Cedar Park Vista Ridge back on Nov. 29 in what turned out to be a double overtime thriller.

Prosper escaped victoriously with an 84-75 win but not before Oliver exploded for 52 points and was the only Lady Eagle to score in double figures as she willed Prosper over the Lady Rangers.

Best Coach

Kristin Cole, Celina girls basketball

When it comes to playing and coaching basketball at a supremely high level, there aren’t many better in the area than Cole, the Celina head girls basketball coach.

Cole is a former All-American from her high school days playing in Southern California and later went on to have a fine career collegiately at Notre Dame.

After that, she went on to remain coaching at the college level at West Texas A&M and then later in the Metroplex at the University of Texas at Arlington before she decided to call it quits a year ago to focus more on her family.

At the same time, Colewanted to remain in coaching and felt that taking her talents to the high school ranks best suited her. Some high-profile Class 6A schools displayed plenty of interest in Cole, but she fell in love with what Celina had to offer upon meeting with head football coach Bill Elliott and others.

Her impact was felt instantly, as she inherited an 8-21 ballclub and led them to the playoffs before losing to state power Lincoln in the first round. Cole returns a large bulk of her roster from a year ago and don’t be surprised if Celina climbs its way into the district title discussion this season.

Biggest Upset

Celina vs. Anna softball, May 10

During the district campaign, the Celina softball team was a perfect 2-0 against one of its closest rivals, Anna.

Although both meetings had been extremely tight with a combined score of 5-2, the two sides met again in the third round of the playoffs where the Lady Bobcats entered as the favorites after crushing Crandall in the previous round.

However, Celina caught Anna at the wrong time, as the Lady Coyotes steamrolled their first two playoff opponents by a combined score of 39-0.

Then in the rematch with Celina, Anna matched its run total from the first two meetings in the first inning alone when it produced two runs before plating five more in the fifth to take the lead for good.

The Lady Coyotes went on to upset Celina, 8-4, and would advance all the way to the state tournament before losing to Hargrave.

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