It has been a year without precedent. That much is undeniable.
Regardless, the student athletes representing Woodlands Christian have continuously impressed both on and off their respective playing fields. Despite schedule changes, restrictions, cancellations and more, the Warriors proved that their toughness knows no bounds.
As the winter sports season comes to a close, here is a look at what the Warriors have accomplished.
What do you do when you have no facility to practice? No warm-up meets? No regional qualifiers?
Well, you send your best to the TAPPS State Meet and you compete anyway. That’s exactly what the TWCA swim team did this past week. Three Warriors -- Izzy Krantzcke, Brynnah Stowell and Merritt Ruffner – travelled to San Antonio on Tuesday, February 9th to battle in the state championships.
All three competitors earned points for TWCA, which garnered a 10th place finish out of 23 teams. Ruffner, who played for the soccer team the night before, competed for the first time in nearly a year, and earned a 14th place in the 100-meter backstroke and a 15th place finish in the 50-meter freestyle.
Stowell earned two bronze medals – one in the 100-meter butterfly and another in the 500-meter freestyle. Krantzcke led the charge with a silver medal in the 200-meter freestyle and a gold medal state championship finish in the 500-meter freestyle.
“Although this was not the season we had hoped for due to COVID, to even have a State Meet was amazing,” head coach Lisa Murphy said. “I am extremely proud of all of these girls.”
Sometimes, teams just click from the start. Such is the case with the TWCA Lady Warrior soccer squad led by head coach Paige Peterson. Despite being in only their 3rd year as a program, the Warriors wrapped up the regular season with a 14-1 record and a perfect 14-0 record in TAPPS Div. II District 5 play to earn a district championship and a first-round bye in the playoffs.
“Coming from the first year as a program to now, we’ve gained a ton of players that are passionate about soccer,” senior center back Megan Hanigan said. “Having a team that is full of younger players (freshmen through juniors) is really amazing.”
“Most of our team has been playing together since their first year,” junior midfielder Lindsay Worthington added. “We all know each other which helps with team chemistry. It’s familiar faces every year.”
The Lady Warriors are slated to host the winner of Regents School of Austin and Victoria St. Joseph in the Area round of the playoffs next Tuesday, February 16th, weather permitting.
As Hanigan and the Warriors prepare for the playoffs, their approach is straight forward.
“Hard work, dedication and perseverance aside, we need to not overthink what we’re doing. We simply need to play soccer,” Hanigan said. “If we pull together and play as one cohesive unit, we’ll pull together and play like we always do.”
Worthington and her teammates know that when the playoffs come, the competition gets harder.
“We need to be humble,” she said. “We expect to play tough teams.”
Whatever happens in 2021, the Lady Warriors soccer program is primed for success. With a majority of the team set to return next season, Hanigan knows the team is in good hands.
“As a senior, it’s really nice to see that I’m leaving the team with a good, young, fresh program,” she said. "We can only go up from here."
Another young program, the TWCA boys soccer squad finished the season by earning a playoff spot in the TAPPS Div. II playoffs with a record of 8-9 (6-8 in district). Despite playing in one of the toughest districts in the state, the Warriors fought their way to the playoffs, and held tough in every game they played. Four of the team’s eight district losses were by one goal or less.
Senior Stratton Butaud led the team with 14 goals on the season, followed by junior Kyle Jasek who netted nine goals and 13 assists.
TWCA’s first round playoff match will pit the Warriors against Brownsville St. Joseph Academy on Saturday, February 13th at 12 p.m.
The defending TAPPS 4A state champions have earned another district championship in 2021 regardless of what happens in the final regular season game of the season Friday night.
The Warriors (20-5, 11-0) are in the playoffs, but head coach Tanner Field knows there is still work to be done.
“The more we buy into our 'Be Third Mentality' – Where God is first and our teammates are second – the better we’ll be as a team,” Field said.
The Warriors enter the playoffs, which are scheduled to begin on February 20th, with a chance to win the program’s 7th state title, and 3rd championship in the last four years.
Another season, another playoff appearance for the Lady Warrior basketball team and head coach Kevin Zubke.
Led by senior McKenna Meadors and the duo of Maddie Steed (20+ ppg) and Mackenzie Morris (leads team in assists and steals), TWCA (15-6, 9-2) has clinched a playoff berth, though their final placement is yet to be determined.
The Warriors finish their regular season against Fort Bend Christian on Friday, February 12 and will start their playoff run on February 20, 2021.