MINERAL WELLS —
A second newcomer to the program is junior guard Bethany Allen, one of the best female athletes in the school but who had never put on a basketball uniform at MWHS.
“BB” was an all-state shortstop in just her sophomore season last year, and was a first-team, all-district volleyball player this past fall at the libero position.
I had heard she was an open gym legend, and this year she decided to take her talents to the varsity squad. Allen and classmate Courtney Peña are a pair of shut-down defenders on the perimeter and another reason this team is winning.
“Bethany has improved each game, and she was selected all-tournament last weekend at the Burkburnett tournament,” Shelstead said. “Coaches were not asked to turn in all-tournament selections from their teams, and at this tournament a committee chose the all-tournament team.
“Her being chosen all-tournament validates what I thought of her play.
“Clearly, she has stepped up, and her progression is a result of her accepting who she is and understanding – without me telling her – what she has to do to help this particular group be successful.
“Bethany always works hard and gives me her best, and defensively she is quick, tenacious and never backs down. Offensively, she gets the ball where it needs to go, and I can also use her in the post to set screens. She does a lot of little things that most spectators do not notice. I can rely on her.”
Of course, the other two starters new to the program are Sydney and Kennedy, transfers who came to MWHS when their dad accepted the job as head coach.
Shelstead has told me on more than one occasion how much fun he is having coaching his daughters at the high school varsity level, and with a talent like Sydney one can see why.