The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

December 30, 2013

Dogwood's Best: The Top Sports Stories of 2013

By BRYAN URBACH
Palestine Herald-Press

PALESTINE —

This year, pro athletes came to Palestine, Dogwood Circle teams made Regionals and players signed letters of intent to go to college.

But which was the best?

 

Adrian Peterson and Sandra Cummings Glover honored

 

This football season, Palestine High School honored two great Palestine athletes during the homecoming game at halftime.

Minnesota Vikings’ running back Adrian Peterson had his jersey retired at halftime and was in attendance for the game.

Peterson graduated from Palestine High School in 2004 and was the No. 1 recruit in the nation coming out of high school. He rushed for 2,960 yards in his senior year at Palestine.

Peterson played football at the University of Oklahoma where he was an All American. In 2004, he was runner up for the Heisman Trophy and won the Jim Brown Award as College Football’s best running back. He was the NFL MVP last season.

Also at the game was Sandra Cummings Glover, who graduated from PHS in 1987 and ran track at the University of Houston. She went on to a professional career in track competing in the 400 meter hurdles.

From 1999-2006, Glover was ranked in the top 10 in the world in the 400 meter hurdles.

In 2000, she competed in the Olympics in Sydney, Australia.

She was the United States Champion in the 400 meter hurdle for four years, 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2002.

In 2003 and 2004, she was ranked No. 1 in the world in the 400 meter hurdles.

Both athletes were given plaques for their achievements and were placed in the Wall of Honor.

 

Dogwood Circle teams make playoffs

 

Several Dogwood Circle teams this year made playoffs and some even made it to regionals.

Grapeland High School’s golf, softball and varsity boys basketball teams made it to regionals this year. Oakwood High School’s varsity boys basketball team also made it to regionals this year.

For Palestine High School, it had 18 athletes advance to regionals for track and field earlier this year.

Westwood’s volleyball team also made it to regionals for the first time this season. Coach Janae Evans’ team steadily improved during her tenure and the Lady Panthers finally made it to that point in the playoffs.

Out of the seven Dogwood Circle football teams this season, five made it to the playoffs with Oakwood advancing past the first round.

 

Dogwood Circle signing day

 

Feb. 7 was a day that many people will remember this year, especially those who signed letters of intent to play college football.

From Palestine High School, Thomas Jones, Paul Barksdale, Walter Sheridan, Ivory Brown and Jadarrius Beasley all decided to continue their respective careers into the collegiate level.

Jones chose New Mexico Junior College, Barksdale and Sheridan chose Trinity Valley Community College, Brown chose Tyler Junior College and Beasley chose Arizona Western.

Cayuga also had two players sign their intent.

Chris Hardy chose to play football at Southeastern Oklahoma State University, and Chantz Holland chose to play baseball with Vernon College.

 

Oakwood’s Damiyne Durham commits to Baylor

 

Earlier this year, Oakwood was playing in the playoffs for football.

During that time, Damiyne Durham decided it was time for him to select where he would be playing his college ball.

Durham signed his letter of intent to play basketball at Baylor University on Nov. 11 of this year.

Durham has had a strong season thus far for the Oakwood basketball team, and he recently scored 47 points in a match against Elkhart in the Houston County Hoopfest.