Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : July 23, 2015


By Erik Walsh
Monitor Sports Editor
MABANK–Coaches often get into their profession because of a combined passion for sports and helping kids. This is no different for Mabank’s new Head Softball Coach, Brent Achorn.
Achorn spent 11 years in law enforcement as a police officer before he decided the best way to impact the lives of young people was to become a coach and teacher.
“I got tired of seeing all the crimes committed against kids,” Achorn told The Monitor. “I had always been a sports person so I decided I could affect more lives as a coach.”
At the time, Achorn was assigned to the Stephenville police force. He enrolled at Tarleton State University and eventually became the graduate assistant and helped with the football team.
Now, 10 years later, he finds himself in Mabank, teaching U.S. history after nearly getting hired for the same job in Athens.
“I originally applied to the Athens position,” Achorn said. “I was among the two finalists for the job, but they couldn’t get my teaching field lined up with their needs, so I was left looking for other positions throughout Texas.”
That’s when Mabank Athletic Director Tracy Carter got a call from Athens Athletic Director Paul Essary, who was impressed with Achorn and recommended Mabank’s open softball position to Achorn. The rest, they say, is history.
“I got the call from Coach Carter on the way home from an interview in Wichita Falls,” Achorn said. “I’m excited about coaching in Mabank because I get to keep teaching U.S. history and inherit a group of hungry girls that are excited to play softball.”
Achorn brings 10 years of head softball coaching experience to Mabank after spending time at Granbury, Fossil Ridge and Abilene high schools. In his initial season at Fossil Ridge, he helped bring the team to the playoffs for the first time in 10 years. Achorn will also chip in coaching volleyball as the freshman coach in Mabank. He has six years of volleyball coaching experience.
Now Achorn and his wife are making the transition to Mabank. “We just got a contract on a house last weekend,” he said. “I am excited to meet the girls and their parents.”



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : July 19, 2015


By Erik Walsh
Monitor Staff Writer
Two local high school coaches will be suiting up with the new Mesquite Marshals professional arena football team when games begin games next year.
Most notably is Mabank Panthers Quarterback Coach Kolton Browning. After finishing his college career in 2014, Browning began his journey to play professional football by trying out with the Dallas Cowboys and serving for a time with Winnipeg Blue Bombers before a messy stint with the Brooklyn Bolts. After those situations didn’t pan out for Browning, he came back to Mabank and began working as the quarterback coach for the Panthers.
Meanwhile, Eustace offensive line coach Clay Ard was networking with an old friend in the business: Marshals Head Coach Larry Hendrix. Hendrix and Ard worked together seven years ago when they coached for a team in the Independent Indoor Football Alliance. Ard joined Hendrix’s staff on the Marshals and eventually approached Browning.
“Kolton was hesitant to join up at first because how poorly things went with the Bombers,” Ard said. “Some minor league teams can be very sketchy and sometimes whole teams fold during the season. Sometimes players never get paid.”
However, Ard –who himself is a former Panthers coach from Browning’s time on the Mabank squad–had a good rapport with the quarterback and was able to persuade him to join the team.
“Kolton was concerned that playing would interfere with his commitment as a coach,” Ard said. “I assured him it would not. Games don’t begin until after the football season is over and I am a high school coach myself.”
Browning has signed with the team, but he will still need to earn his spot like any other player.
“Kolton will be out there for the second try-outs in October,” Ard said. “While anyone can show up and compete with him for the quarterback role, with his level of talent and experience I expect that he will to be our starter.”
Browning is a former Mabank Panthers quarterback and had a successful college career with the University of Louisiana–Monroe Warhawks. As a Warhawk he was named the Sun Belt Conference Offensive Player of the Year in 2012.
The Mesquite Marshals are the 11th team in the Indoor Football League and will be playing home games at the Mesquite Championship Arena. Head Coach Hendrix is a former NFL player and has been coaching arena football since 2001.
Cheerleader tryouts are set for Aug. 1-2.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : July 16, 2015


By Erik Walsh
Monitor Sports Editor
KEMP–The Kemp Yellowjackets coaching staff hosted a three-day youth football camp at Yellowjacket Stadium July 13-15.
Twenty-five students hit the grid iron from 8:30-11:30 a.m. each day to practice football fundamentals, including passing, running, kicking and blocking.
Coach Jamie Martin said the students are working hard every day.
“The boys come out ready to play,” he said. “The younger ones look up to the older kids and get comfortable with being on the football field. They are learning important football skills.”
Freshman camp begins next week.