The Izard County Lady Cougars defeated the Viola Lady Longhorns, 5-2, at Lady Cougars Field in Brockwell on March 28. The Lady Cougars (2-0 overall and 2-0 in the conference). Freshman Laney Rider had five strikeouts on the mound while going the distance to pick up the win for the Lady Cougars. Senior Kennedy Cooper had 2 RBI for the Cougars and senior Kristen Caraway had a double and a triple. Junior Abby Brashear, senior Natalie Everett, and sophomore Shyann Morris added one RBI each for the Cougars.
The Izard County Consolidated School District has recently received eight “High-Achieving School” awards from the Office for Education Policy (OEP) at the University of Arkansas The OEP creates an annual report entitled the Outstanding Educational Performance Awards, and Izard County High School has won six “Beating the Odds” awards and Izard County Middle School won two "Beating the Odds" awards. The “Beating the Odds” awards are given to schools who are serving a high percentage of students from low-income communities that are nevertheless reaching high levels of achievement. Awards are based on the OEP-created “school GPA,” calculated on the basis of the percentage of students that perform at each level on the 2016 ACT Aspire Math, ELA, and Science.
Izard County High School won three statewide awards and three Northeast Regional awards in the areas of English Language Arts, Math, and Science and Izard County Middle School won two Northeast Regional awards in Math and Science.
Taylor Reynolds and Justus Cooper of Izard County and Logan Skaggs of Mammoth Spring were voted All State in senior boys basketball by the coaches of the 1A 2 North Conference recently. All three are first-time All State selections. Taylor and Skaggs are seniors and Cooper is a freshman. In girls, Kelcy Acklin and Marleigh Dodson of Norfork and Kennedy Cooper of Izard County were named All State. Cooper, a senior, has been named to four consecutive All State Teams, Dodson, a junior, was selected for the second time, and Acklin, a senior, was a first-time selection. The top boys All Star Nominees from the 1A 2 North selected in order were Reynolds. Skaggs, and Lewis. Top girls All Star nominees selected in order were Cooper and Acklin.
In All Conference selections by the blended 2A/1A-3 Conference, Reynolds, Cooper, Tanner Brooks, and Dallas Farmer of Izard County were selected. The Cougars were conference champions and finished 14-0 in the conference. The conference runner-ups, the Cotter Warriors, had Maddux Adams, Matthew Gorbet, and Landon Martin selected to the team. Other selections included Skaggs and Sagen Godwin of Mammoth Spring; Brenden Sneathern and Hunter Johnson of Calico Rock; Travis Lewis and Grant Casey from Norfork; Jon Martin of Viola, Stephen Shoup of Salem, and Tanner Theobald of Flippin. In girls, Acklin, Dodson, Ivy McGowan, and Macy Dillard of Norfork were selected to the All Conference Team. The Lady Panthers also finished 14-0 in the conference. The conference runner-ups, the Izard County Lady Cougars, had Cooper, Jen King, and Sam King selected to the team. Others selected included Kallie Fry and Megan Hiles from Calico Rock; Kaylea Walling and Madison Sellars of Salem; Alexa Wooten and Rebecca Martin of Cotter; Brianna Hocum of Mammoth Spring, Karlee Wood of Flippin and Emily Perryman of Viola.
In junior boys, All Conference selections were Caleb Faulkner, Coby Everett and Chase Orf of the conference champions and district runner-ups, Izard County; Daniel Mayfield, Zack Flynn, and Chris Cray of the district champions, Mammoth Spring; Tyler Guffey, Bryson Love, and Riley Gray of conference runner-ups, Salem; Gage Harris and Caleb Macleod of Viola; Brycen Baker and Lance May of Flippin; Dylan Dwyer of Cotter, Kaiden Withrow of Calico Rock, and Tyler Sorters of Norfork.
In junior girls, All Conference selections included Braidlyn Fierce, Keyiara Moore, Lindsey Browning, and Sammi McCandlis of conference and district champions,Viola; Kyra Hargrove, Bre Sample, and Emily Davenport of conference and district runner-ups, Flippin; Kylee Humphries and MacKenzie Hill of Salem; Kaylee Pool and Emma Mitchell of Calico Rock; Shelby VanGinhovan and Kelli Young of Mammoth Spring Laney Rider of Izard County: Kynzie Rangel of Norfork: and Paige Clawson of Cotter.
Cougars Reach Final Four
The Izard County Cougars, using momentum from their regional title win over Bay, won two games at Mount Ida to reach the Class 1A Final Four. The Cougars (35-10) defeated Mineral Springs, 62-51, and Bradley, 67-50, to reach the Final Four. Against Mineral Springs, All State senior Taylor Reynolds led the Cougars with 26 points and All State Freshman Justus Cooper added 19 points. Senior Tanner Brooks contributed 10 points, senior Dallas Farmer three points, senior Tyler Simino two points and sophomore Cole Wallis two points. The Cougars defeated Bradley to reach the semifinals and the Cougars were again led by Reynolds with 26 and Cooper with 17. Brooks added 12, Farmer 8, and Simino 4. The Cougars fell to Shirley in the semifinals, 53-49, and Cooper led with 21. Reynolds 8, Farmer 8, Brooks 7, Simino 4, and sophomore Dalton Dillard 1. The lady Cougars lost theit opening round game to Mount Vernola-Enola, 47-29. The Lady Cougars (31-8) were led by All State senior Kennedy Cooper with 9, junior Jen King 8, senior Kristen Caraway 7, senior Natalie Everett 3, and junior Harley Thomason 2.
The Cougars and Lady Cougars have both qualified for the state tournament the past four years. The Cougars have amassed an overall record of 123-46 during that span under Coach Kyle McCandlis and have won one regional title and three regional runner-up trophies. The Cougars have one Final Four, one Elite Eight, and two Sweet Sixteen finishes in the state tournament the past four years. The Lady Cougars' record over the past four years is 121-38 including a two year mark under Coach Tim Massey of 67-15. The Lady Cougars have won two regional titles and two regional runner-up finishes and have had two Elite Eight and two Sweet Sixteen performances in the past four years.
The Izard County Cougars defeated the Mineral Springs Hornets, 62-51, in the 1A state tournament at Mount Ida on Tuesday. The Cougars (34-9) were led by Taylor Reynolds with 26 points and Justus Cooper with 19. Tanner Brooks added 10 points for the Cougars. The score was tied 14-14 after one quarter, the Hornets led 27-26 at the half and the Cougars led 43-38 after three quarters.
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