A twelve year run at Jay came to an end as girls’ Coach Terry Sweeney announced he had accepted a new coaching position at Locust Grove for the next school year.
“It was a tough day when we told everyone; it was a pretty emotional day for everyone as I’ve been very close to each player” shared Coach Sweeney.
In the twelve years Sweeney has been at Jay, he spent the first six years coaching girls, then boys for the next 5 years and then back to the girls for the final year.
He said “the kids came a long way this year and were a good group,” ending with a 9 and 17 record; getting knocked out in the first round of playoffs.
When Sweeney led the boys’ team, they made it to two state tournaments and winning in a consolation finals another year.
When asked if the bond defeat had anything to do with his decision to leave, his response was the decision was made before the outcome of the bond, but its defeat reinforced he made the right call.
“It was a real negative for the community that the bond didn’t pass; that sealed the deal for me.”
“There are real good people in Jay,” noting the failure of the bond will have long time negative impact on the community, since people and businesses look at quality of school systems and infrastructure.
He explained that Locust Grove had previously passed a bond and built some great school facilities and it is already attracting new businesses to town.
How did the Locust Grove move begin?
“Coach Brown called to ask me if I would be interested; it is a good program and they wanted to move pretty quickly.”
His family will be moving to Locust Grove or the area this summer to get settled in before the school year begins.
Locust Grove girls have been state champions for two years and were back last year.
The team has six or seven freshman who are good with five seniors returning, of which three are starters, plus add Sweeney’s daughter Landry to the team.
The Bulldogs have played the Pirates and will play each other this coming year and Sweeney admits it will be tough games.
Though he will be familiar with how each Bulldog plays, in turn the Bulldogs will be familiar with his plays and defense strategies.
It should make for interesting games.
He will also be teaching a class or two, though he doesn’t know the details, yet.
Sweeney says he will have to dial in fast as the Pirates play defending 4A champion Anadarko first up.
One challenge he will have is there is only one assistant and the open slots haven’t been filled, but Sweeney is up to the challenge.
Besides inheriting a very strong program, he also gets to experience a four-day school week in Locust Grove, which “is kinda cool.”
Sweeney will continue to coordinate the All-Stars Games, “at least one more year.”
Best wishes to Coach Terry Sweeney and the Bulldogs will look forward to playing against his team in the coming school year.