Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : February 7, 2016

Melvin Swift worked up

By Ryan Moulds
Monitor Staff Writer
ATHENS–The community of Athens and Trinity Valley Community College are mourning the death of basketball player Melvin Swift. Swift was shot and killed Dec. 29 in Houston. Police say Swift may have been part of a home invasion and the shooting appears to be self defense by the resident.
The shooting happened around 8 p.m. on Jornes Street in South Houston.
HPD Homicide Division Sergeant T. Ruland and J. Saldana reported: “The male resident of the address returned to his home with several family members. The resident’s young daughter went to her bedroom and was startled by an unknown black male suspect armed with a knife. As the suspect attempted to exit the house he began fighting with the resident and other family members. The resident, fearing for his family’s safety, then fired a gun at the suspect, striking him in the leg. The suspect was transported to Ben Taub General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.”
Back in Athens the TVCC basketball team was devastated about the news of their fellow player. Head Coach Kris Baumann said he spoke with his players about the shooting but declined to speak on camera.
Marlo Bitter, Director of Communications at TVCC released the following statement: “Today, we were saddened by the news that Melvin Swift has passed away. His warm smile and presence on campus will be sorely missed.”
Swift graduated from Yates High School in Houston and was home for the winter break. His family’s home was less than a block away from where the shooting took place.
Swift was a 6-8, 210 pound sophomore at TVCC who had NBA potential. He had several division one offers including Baylor, SMU, UConn, Oklahoma State, and UMass. He was planning on signing soon.
At the time of the shooting, Swift was not listed on the TVCC roster. Swift played in eight games for TVCC this season and started one.
He averaged seven points per game this season.
He had a season high 11 points in the last game he played this season against the Texas Riders.
Authorities have not brought charges against the homeowner who shot Swift.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : February 4, 2016

Madison Vincik

Megan Mueller

By Ryan Moulds
Monitor Staff Writer
MABANK–The Mabank Lady Panthers’ soccer team is looking to improve on last year’s very successful season, where they made it into the fourth round of the playoffs. First year head coach Sean Falloure says his team’s goal is a State Championship and nothing less.
Before coming to Mabank, Falloure was the head coach at South Garland High School for eight seasons. “Coach Thompson (Mabank’s football coach) called me up and asked me if I wanted to win a State Championship and I said yes. I came down here for the interview and met the kids and it really made me want to coach here.”
Falloure says his team spreads out their scoring well and controls the ball well. He is also happy with his team’s speed but thinks inexperience could affect them down the road.
“We want to make it to state,” Mabank senior Payton Costlow said. “We work as a team no matter what and we all complement each other with our strengths.”
Another surprise impact player for Mabank is freshman Juliet Pridgen who scored seven goals in the first 11 games of the season. “I always try to attack and get to the ball first,” Pridgen said. “We are united as a team and we all get along. Our mindset is to win and I think we can make a deep playoff run.”
“Our team work and unity set us apart from other schools,” senior Kaylee Creagh added. Through 11 games, the Lady Panthers are 7-3-1.
Mabank competes in a district with Athens, Gladewater and Chapel Hill. They went 14-10-1 last season and were knocked out in the third round of the state playoffs by Princeton 3-2.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : January 27, 2016

mabank soccer wildcat classic

By Ryan Moulds
Monitor Staff Writer
PALESTINE–The Mabank boy’s soccer team competed in the Wildcat Classic Jan. 14-16 and went 4-1. The Panthers beat Kemp, Palestine, Mexia, and Crandall before falling to Center in the Championship Game.
Mabank started things off by beating Kemp 7-0 in their first game. The Panthers scored early and often to win in a blowout.
Things really picked up in the next game when the Panthers faced off against Palestine, who was ranked fifth in the state. The Panthers played great on defense with goalkeeper Bubba Gray playing very well. Mabank upset the Wildcats 2-1 and moved to 2-0 in the tournament.
The Panthers later went on to beat Mexia 6-1 and Crandall 5-1 to make their tournament record 4-0. They advanced to the championship game to play a Center team that went all the way to last year’s state championship game before falling to San Elizario. The Panthers played their hardest against the defending state runner-ups but dropped the game 2-0.
Standout players for Mabank included Jeremiyah Mathis, Darius Duyka, Jordan Cottrell, Jonah Armstrong, Justin Shelton, James Coker and Nick Greenville.
Mabank moves to 4-2 on the season after the tournament.