Wolverton named No. 2 on win list in USA
Wednesday, December 12, 2012 12:00 AM
Talk about a historic victory.
The Leake Academy Rebelettes' 59-23 win over Heritage Academy Saturday counted as a lot more than just another prep basketball victory. With the victory, Doyle Wolverton became the second winnings high school girls basketball coach in the United States as his career record improved to 1,218-179.
Wolverton passed Jim Smiddy who coached girls basketball in Tennessee from 1948-1973 and put together 1,217 wins. Wolverton is only second in victories to Leta Andrews who is still coaching in Texas. Coach Andrews has 1,375 victories.
When Wolverton first came to Leake Academy during the 1975-1976 school year, he only thought he would stay a year or so. The Union native had just graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi. And, he wanted to coach boys basketball. Little did he know.
"At the start, I never thought about something like this," Wolverton said. "But time went by and I stayed on. When you keep having back-to-back-to-back championship seasons, it adds up. We established our program, and have had some great players come along over the years to keep it going. A lot of credit goes to them."
Wolverton noted that Leake Academy is a AA school, mostly playing teams its size or bigger.
"We have around 580 students in grades K-4 through 12," Wolverton said. "We play our schedule, sometimes against the bigger schools. Heritage is a AAA school," Wolverton said. "We run the same system in the junior high that we run in high school and those younger players are ready when they come up. That's the key," Wolverton noted.
At one time, the Leake Academy junior high girls won 108 games in a row. They lost one game and then won another 58 games in a row. That's how you build dynasties. The Rebelettes have always dominated their district under Wolverton. They have now won 10 straight North Half Championships in a row and seven straight AA state championships.
Wolverton was joined by many of his former players for his landmark win along with 25 family members. He noted that he has coached several daughters of his former players but no granddaughters, yet.
"When I start coaching great-granddaughters, maybe it will be time to retire," he laughed. "I'm feeling good right now and plan to keep on going."
Hannah Peoples and Mary Grace Key both scored 13 points to lead the Rebelettes past Heritage. On Friday, Leake Academy defeated Immanuel Christian 68-43 for a district win. Peoples scored 14 points. Katy Webb added 13 and Key put in 11.
The Leake Academy boys split their games. They lost 68-62 to Heritage. Alex Shepard scored 26 points and Reed Mayfield added 12. On Friday, they defeated Immanuel 63-52 for a district win. Mayfield led with 19 points while Thomas Tubby added 18 and Shepard scored 17.
The Leake Academy teams host Oak Hill Friday and travel to Immanuel on Saturday.