Four Jefferson High School wrestlers won individual titles Saturday to lead the Dragons in yet another successful bid for a traditional team state championship, the school’s 13th in a row.
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Thomas Whitley, 18, signed a letter of intent to play golf on scholarship at Emmanuel College in Franklin Springs next year.
The Jackson County Comprehensive High School senior said the opportunity fulfills a dream of his to attend a faith-based school. That the campus is a comfortable distance from his Hoschton home makes it that much better.
“It’s nice to be able to check a dream off my list,” Whitley said, of the religious institution where he wants to study business. “It is close to home, but it is also far enough away to feel like I am actually at college…I’m extremely happy to be able to keep playing golf.”
His coach Warren Standridge said Whitley has consistently played in the no. 1 or no. 2 spots for the Panthers his past four years on the team.
Whitley is a capable under-par golfer who will be among those pegged to lead the squad of 12-15 golfers, including six seniors, this season, Standridge said.
Both Jefferson High School basketball teams earned state playoff berths this week and advanced to the semifinal rounds of the region 8-AA tournament.
The boys' team defeated Oglethorpe County 74-45 Tuesday and will face Rabun County, which beat Riverside Military Academy Wednesday. Tip-off for JHS’ semifinal is planned for 5:30 p.m. Friday at Greene County High School.
The game will follow the Lady Dragons semifinal contest against Greene County.
The JHS' girls advanced with their 63-23 win over Oglethorpe County Wednesday.
Both teams must win to move on to the region championship games, planned for 7 p.m. (girls) and 8:30 p.m. (boys) Saturday. The consolation games are scheduled for 4 p.m. (girls) and 5:30 p.m. (boys).
The outcome matters for seeding purposes entering the state tournament. Advancing to the regional finals means hosting the first round of the state tournament.
For a full story on the progress of the JHS teams, see the Feb. 13 edition of the Jackson Herald.
Coach T. McFerrin told his Jefferson High School football team and assistant coaches Thursday morning that he was retiring.
"This is it," he said. "I think the time was right."
He called the emotional meeting with players held at the school as being "tough," but added that he was hopeful for a "smooth (coaching) transition."
His announcement comes within a week of his being named Class AA coach of the year after the Dragons shocked the state with its blowout of Calhoun for the state championship on Dec. 15.
Principal Kevin Smith and superintendent John Jackson have been aware of McFerrin's decision for some time, McFerrin said. The coach wanted to wait until the season ended before telling his players.
"I'm glad it ended the way it did," McFerrin said.
He ends his 38-year coaching career with a record of 340 wins, 102 losses and four ties. At JHS, where he has coached four seasons, he earned a 39-9 record with two region championships, three state playoff berths and one state championship.
His overall win record is fourth best in the state.
See next Wednesday's paper for a full story.
The Georgia High School Association’s biennial reclassification of schools has yielded Commerce High a somewhat tenuous scheduling picture for the Tigers’ 2012 football season.
Part of the scheduling dilemma relates to the possibility that more than 30 schools, which met recently to explore a break from the GHSA, will form their own league or enter some kind of agreement with the Georgia Independent School Association.
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The game stopped the 1963 night Shirley Nunn scored the go-ahead basket. She topped a career-high points record posted by former Commerce High teammate, Linda Lang, who broke the mark just three years earlier.
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Lincoln County ended Commerce’s season on Friday with the Red Devils’ 35-14 win over the Tigers in the first round of the state playoffs in Lincolnton.
Commerce (4-7) had rallied in the second half, scoring a touchdown in its first possession to narrow the score to 14-7. But Lincoln scored quickly and continued to widen its lead with the majority of its scores coming on breakaway plays.
Quarterback Cody Streetman, the team’s leading rusher, scored both of the Tigers’ touchdowns on short yardage runs.
Lincoln County (11-0) remains undefeated and will go on to host Clinch County in the second round of the playoffs.