On Top Of the World

Benitez thrives in first year at North Shore after full circle journey

The philosophy that Benitez has brought back to North Shore has worked. Via VYPE

Originally Appeared on Vype

HOUSTON – Life is a journey and sometimes just because you leave a place doesn't mean you will never return.

Sam Benitez's coaching journey kind of played out that way as it took him away from North Shore after the 2012-2013 season. Benitez, who had served as an assistant coach under David Green for six seasons, took the top job at Cypress Springs.

When North Shore needed its next head coach Benitez made his return to the East Side.

"It's been great, I feel like it is coming full circle," Benitez said. "I left to have an opportunity to be a head coach and build a foundation as far as a philosophy as a coach. To be able to come back and put that philosophy to the test and seeing we can be successful is great."

The philosophy that Benitez has brought back to North Shore has worked.

It has worked really well.

In his inaugural season as the Mustangs' head coach, North Shore is 23-2 and ranked No. 5 in the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Weekly Poll after climbing as high as No. 1 in Texas in the past few weeks.

"I feel like we have a good group of kids that have a chance to be pretty successful," Benitez said. "They bought into what we're preaching and put in a lot of time and effort and we were able to do some things to get off to a pretty hot start."

North Shore rattled off a 19-game winning streak already this year, not losing a game between November 20 and January 15.

"I think we're still a work in progress," Benitez said. "We definitely have some pieces and we've definitely been successful. It just goes to show you can get beat any night. With that in mind we take it with a grain of salt, get back to practice, work on some things that we need to improve on."


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By Bradley Collier

Originally Appeared on VYPE

On paper, Aldine Davis should be the best returning Aldine ISD volleyball squad for the 2019 campaign.

But that's just on paper.

Starla Jones, the reigning District 16-6A Coach of the Year, has been persistent this offseason in reminding her team that the successes of last year are just that. They are last season's, which doesn't entitle her group to that same success in 2019.

"I think it's going to give them some confidence that they have a year under their belt," Jones said. "But it's a new season, a new team. Last year is last year. I'm reminding them that we've got to start all over. It's going to take some work like it did before.

"We can't settle, and we can't expect to be at the top just because we were last year."

Last season, Aldine Davis went 20- 26-1 overall and 10-4 in District 16-6A play to finish in a tie for second place with MacArthur.

"I've told them, you do realize because you were up there you are definitely one of the teams to beat," Jones said. "Everybody's going to be pumped. I don't care what team it is. They're going to be ready to play you."

Returning to the court for the Falcons this season is District 16-6A Newcomer of the Year Kiyah Felder, first-team selections Ashlyn Laymond and Tavia Harrell and second-teamer Hailey Harris. Also returning is Lyric Carwell, who was an honorable mention.

What excites Jones the most about this group is that this summer the girls put in the needed work to get better in the weight room.


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