SPORTS HEADLINES

Bulls take strides in Wilson’s first year

By Reece Waddell | Published Wednesday, July 11, 2018
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Charging Ahead

CHARGING AHEAD – Bridgeport players celebrate with Jesus Aguilar after scoring a goal in the 4A Region I semifinal. The Bulls won their third straight district title last season. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Jadon Maddux put the finishing touches on a season of improvement for the Bridgeport Bulls when he medaled at the state track meet in May.

The sophomore finished third in 4A in the 100, highlighting a year of growth across the athletic program.

Senior Caleb Jennings became the first athlete in Bridgeport history to medal at the state powerlifting meet in March. He took fifth in his weight class. Girls soccer also made history, winning its first district title.

Bridgeport athletic director Shannon Wilson said he was impressed with the work ethic of the school’s athletes throughout his first year at the helm.

“I’ve been very pleased and proud of the work that both our girls and boys have put into our athletic program,” Wilson said. “Our goal is to make the post-season in every sport we have, so we are proud of the teams that were able to do so, but we are also excited about some teams that improved and made strides that will allow them to do the same in the future.”

Girls basketball made the playoffs despite dealing with a bevy of injuries. Point guard Emily Vidal tore her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) near the end of the season and 6-2 post Delaney Ingram missed most of district play with a broken wrist.

Football qualified for the postseason after a two-year drought, going 3-8. The Bulls won three of their final five games to take the third seed out of District 3-4A Division II.

“I was very proud of our [football] team last year,” Wilson said. “They improved and gave us a chance to win bi-district. I think this year’s team has improved a ton through the off season and is working hard to make their mark [in 2018]. They are understanding our schemes better which should allow them to play faster.”

BEST TEAM: BOYS SOCCER

For the third time in as many years, the Bridgeport boys soccer team took home the District 3-4A crown. The Bulls knocked off rival Decatur 5-1 in the regular season finale to win the league championship, catapulting them into the postseason.

Bridgeport made a run all the way to the 4A Region I final, falling to eventual state champion San Elizario 1-0 in overtime.

The Bulls entered the season ranked No. 1 in 4A after finishing as the runner-up in 2017. Bridgeport went 21-4-1, averaged 4.2 goals per game and had five players selected to the 3-4A first-team.

Senior Juan Amador was the district MVP, while Rigoberto Alvarez was the Defensive MVP and Edward Rodriguez the Newcomer of the Year.

“The boys had some different expectations from the outside but I thought Coach Cartwright and the team did a great job of focusing on improving week to week,” Wilson said.

BEST SURPRISE: GIRLS SOCCER

Under first-year head coach Lauren Kirby, the Sissies won their first district title, going 6-1-2 in league play.

Bridgeport started the year 2-8-2, but quickly turned things around. The Sissies won seven of their last 10 matches. The Sissies tallied five clean sheets in district play and surrendered just six goals to district opponents.

Senior Maddie Cross was named 3-4A MVP and Kirby earned Coach of the Year honors. Bridgeport had four players selected to the 3-4A first-team.

“I thought Coach Kirby did an outstanding job this year,” Wilson said. “[She] did a great job of making some changes and an enabling the team to be at their best through district and into the playoffs.”

COACHING CHANGES

Wilson said Allison Jones will be Bridgeport’s volleyball coach in the fall, taking over for Morgan Mathews.

Mathews arrived last July from Rosebud-Lott where she led the program to its first playoff appearance in school history.

“[Jones] does an excellent job and we are excited about the upcoming season,” Wilson said.

Carrying the Load

CARRYING THE LOAD – Bridgeport quarterback Jadon Maddux runs the ball in a game against Iowa Park last season. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

BRIDGEPORT AT A GLANCE

Sport … ’16-17 record … ’17-18 record … Postseason

Football … 3-7 … 3-8 … Bi-district

Volleyball … 14-21 … 2-8 district … Missed playoffs

Cross country … Boys 5th in 4A

Boys basketball … 14-20 … 9-24 … Missed playoffs

Girls basketball … 23-10 … 21-7 … Bi-district

Boys soccer … 20-4-5 … 21-4-1 … Region final

Girls soccer … 9-10-1 … Bi-district

Baseball … 13-15 … 9-17 … Missed playoffs

Softball … 6-23 … 4-18 … Missed playoffs

Track … Boys 3rd in 9-4A, Girls 4th in 9-4A

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