SPORTS HEADLINES

Slidell coach Pierce and father share special moment in Class A final

By Reece Waddell | Published Saturday, March 9, 2019.
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Sitting behind Slidell’s bench Saturday morning, a man wearing a light brown suit with a blue and orange tie was on the edge of his seat.

Cheering, clapping and reacting to every play, Louie Pierce, or ‘Boogie’ as he is lovingly referred to, had his eyes glued to the court. His son, Casey, was minutes from leading Slidell to its first championship in 75 years, and Louie wasn’t going to miss a second.

Slidell head coach Casey Pierce gives instruction. UIL boys basketball 3A State Final between Brock and Dallas Madison on Saturday March 9, 2019 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. (Ron Cortes/ Special Contributor)

“I don’t have enough words to describe how I feel about him,” Louie said. “I’m an extremely proud father. I’m proud of what he’s done and the way he conducts himself. All I can say to him is Go Greyhounds.”

Louie has attended Casey’s games for the better part of three decades since his playing career at Krum. Casey won two championships with the Bobcats in 1996 and 1998.

Louie said watching his son grow up and lead a team of his own is something he will never forget.

“As a player, of course, it’s a big team thing,” Louie said. “But when you come down here as a coach, it just has a little different meaning. I think these boys love him. I know he loves them. I think these boys would probably walk thorough a glass door for them.”

Casey, a 39-year-old father of two, said his dad has made a profound impact on his life.

From a young age, Louie would watch, play with and cheer on his son.

“It’s a bonding experience for us,” Casey said. “[Basketball] is something we’ve always been connected through. For him individually, he’s invested as much time, money and travel to support me. Even though he isn’t necessary affiliated with the team or community directly, through me it’s almost a repayment and tribute to him.”

Since Casey took over as head coach in 2017, Louie has become a fan favorite among the Greyhound faithful. From his unique chants to unwavering support, every person in the Slidell gym knows — and loves — Louie.

“He’s the unofficial mascot,” Casey joked. “There are slogans he’s used during the games that have been turned into clichés around the community. Some of those quotes have gone on T-shirts. He loves the game and he passed that along to me early on. Slidell has embraced him just as much as they’ve embraced me since I got here.”

As for Louie, the 70-year-old has no intention of slowing down any time soon. When the final buzzer sounded in the Class A final, all he could do was gush with pride about his son, who just won his third state championship.

“I feel extremely fortunate,” Louie said. “What’s even better is win, lose or draw, [Casey] is just a great guy. That’s even more important to me as a father.”

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