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A letter from Superintendent Joe Pierce:

Kellyville Schools played host this past Thursday, Friday and Saturday to the Class 3A Regional Basketball Tournament. Twelve basketball games featuring seven area schools kicked off at 1:30 on Thursday afternoon and concluded around 9:30 Saturday evening. The highlight of the tournament…..the Kellyville basketball teams – yes, both boys and girls – won regional consolation trophies and qualified for next week’s Class 3A Area Basketball Tournament in Okmulgee. Congratulations to both teams and coaches Jim Upshaw, Chelsey Roth, Taylor Todd, Larry Heath, Josh Hicks and Josh Stephens.

This was a great three days for Kellyville Schools and the community of Kellyville as teams and fans from Adair, Antlers, Atoka, Dewey, Eufaula and Metro Christian travelled to Kellyville for this tournament. I want to once again express my appreciation to the Kellyville voters who voted to approve a bond proposal in April, 2016, that resulted in not only the construction of the Event Center, but also the new Agriculture Facility and the PreK Classroom/Saferoom. Each of these buildings is a state of the art facility and the Event Center drew rave reviews from visiting fans, teams, coaches and officials. We certainly hope that a regional basketball tournament will become a regular event at Kellyville Schools in the coming years.

Some well-deserved words of appreciation and congratulation are certainly in order as the regional tournament drew to a close on Saturday night. An event of this magnitude would be impossible without the wonderful volunteers and workers that gave many hours to hosting this event. Our score table crew of Karen Hudson, Katherine Deverick, Robbie Jones, Dana Jones, Jaycob Jones, Jimmy Ashton and Timmy Todd are simply the best and volunteer time at each and every Kellyville basketball game throughout the season. High school principal Danny Wood, athletic director Jim Upshaw and coaches David Keiffer and Scott Neighbors worked long hours – attending to everything from unruly fans to injured players – over and over again doing the little things that make a tournament run smoothly. The Kellyville Central Office staff of Keri Herring, Sarah Keiffer and Karen Perkins, as well as Kellyville board member Julie Clayton, managed concession and gate duties until the regulars in those jobs arrived on Thursday and Friday. Tournament gate-keepers and concession workers worked long hours – usually after a full day of work in the classroom. Students Chyenne McCleery and Madison Neighbors served as greeters for arriving teams and students Jaycob Jones, Trevor Palmer and Isaac Womble handled video duties. Head custodian Connie McNew altered her weekly schedule in order to insure that the Event Center was in top shape. My apologies if I’ve left anyone off of this list – but again, please know that your work was so necessary and appreciated over the three days of the tournament.

I am so proud of the successes of the Kellyville athletic teams this school year. Beginning the year with a stellar fast-pitch season, watching our Cheer team qualify once more for state competition, continuing into the month of November with the incredible season that the Pony football team had, now celebrating both basketball teams qualifying for area tournament competition, our powerlifting teams competing at a high level, and we still have track, slow-pitch and baseball in front of us – it continues to be a banner year for Kellyville student athletes! When you happen to see one of these dedicated young people, please let them know how much you appreciate them and the great manner in which they represent the community of Kellyville and their high school.

One last note, and while it doesn’t involve a Kellyville student athlete, I can’t help but believe that many of you would want to see this. During the second quarter of the regional final game between Eufaula and Metro Christian boys, a senior Eufaula player suffered a painful injury to his foot – at this time, we have not heard about the severity of the injury, but he was transported to the emergency room before the game ended. I happened to be in the training room while he was being attended to by David Keiffer and several people from Eufaula. As he sat at the end of a training table, his injured foot in a bucket of ice water, his coach came into the room. Coach Jeff Oliver gave the injured player a big hug, told him how much he loved him, told him that his teammates were playing hard for him, and then prayed with him that all would be well. What a moment. The coach-player relationship is a special one – one that all coaches must take with the serious understanding of the great influence that they have with their players. Thanks, Coach Oliver, for demonstrating that on Saturday evening.

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