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UIL: Champs join same league – Argyle, Decatur to share 9-4A volleyball loop

By Richard Greene | Published Wednesday, February 3, 2016
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Collision Course

COLLISION COURSE – Decatur and Argyle have won the past three state titles in volleyball. They will be in the same district next year. Messenger Photo by Joe Duty

In 2014, the Decatur Lady Eagles and Argyle Lady Eagles met for the 4A state volleyball title with Decatur winning in four games.

Argyle beat Decatur last year in a regular season meeting in four sets on the way to winning the 4A title.

Next fall, the past two state champions will be battling for the District 9-4A crown. The two landed in the same district in the University Interscholastic League’s biennial realignment.

“It’s probably the toughest district in all of 4A,” said Decatur coach Claire Gay. “It’ll be fun.”

Decatur has won 64 straight district matches, entering next season.

“That district run will be tested,” Gay said.

The Lady Eagles are also moving from Region I back to Region II. Decatur went through Region II in 2013 on the way to winning the program’s first state title.

“It’s closer,” Gay said. “Region II is a little stronger.”

Decatur has played in four straight region finals. The Lady Eagles fell in four sets to 4A state runnerup Bushland this year in the Region I final.

RUNNING BACK TO REGION II

The past two years, the Decatur girls cross country team went out west to battle the tough region course in Lubbock to get to the state meet.

Next year, Decatur and Bridgeport will head to Grand Prairie to try to secure state bids. Both schools moved to Region II’s 9-4A.

“I had a feeling we might head back east,” said Decatur cross country coach David Park. “We’re always on the bubble.”

The two will also face tough competition at the district level from Argyle and Sanger.

“I welcome the challenge. Everyone is going to make everyone better,” Park said.

Gainesville and Krum will also be in the league, making for a strong district on the track.

For area track, 9-4A will be matched up with District 10-4A’s Carrollton Ranchview, Dallas Carter, Wilmer Hutchins, Dallas Lincoln, Dallas Pinkston, Oak Cliff Faith Family and North Hills Prep.

HOOPS HEADING EAST

The past two seasons, the 8-4A basketball titles for boys and girls have come down to the matchups between Decatur and Bridgeport.

Next year, the two rivals expect plenty of challenges from tradition-rich basketball schools – Argyle, Gainesville, Krum and Sanger.

On the boys side, Bridgeport, Argyle, Gainesville and Krum have won state titles since 1997.

“It’s a quality district. It’ll be very competitive,” said Decatur coach Drew Coffman.

In the bi-district round, the district will be matched up 10-4A with powerhouses Dallas Carter and Lincoln that are in the top 10 this season.

“You face Dallas ISD first off in the playoffs,” Coffman said. “We hope we’ve put ourselves in position as a program that we don’t shy away from a challenge.”

The girls basketball league is just as loaded. Argyle is the defending 4A champion and is ranked No. 1 this year. Sanger is ranked No. 6 currently.

“With Argyle and Sanger, it’s a very competitive district,” said Decatur coach Billy Garner.

Bridgeport coach Dallas Taylor added: “It’s one of the tougher districts there is with Argyle – the defending champion – Sanger and Krum.”

LITTLE CHANGE FOR SLIDELL

Slidell returned to Class A’s District 21 in the latest round of realignment with Midway, Bellevue, Forestburg, Gold-Burg, Prairie Valley and Saint Jo.

The one change was losing Tioga, making a seven-team league.

“We thought that might happen,” said Slidell Athletic Director Todd McCormick. “We’ll be trying to figure out the byes in district. That makes it a little difficult on scheduling.”

ALVORD, CHICO MOVE TO FIVE-TEAM LEAGUE

Alvord and Chico found themselves in a five-team football league Monday after realignment.

That meant scrambling to find a sixth non-district game. Alvord landed City View and Chico Cumby.

Out of the five-team league, four schools will make the playoffs.

“You don’t want to be last,” said Chico coach Lane Wilson.

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