YANTIS — It all went down on Monday, July 6 in the conference room at Yantis ISD.
Former Sulphur Springs head girls basketball coach Tina Carrillo signed on the dotted line as the new Yantis Lady Owls head basketball/head softball coach.
“Tina brings a lot to Yantis,” said Yantis athletic director Jack Bowles. “We are looking forward to Yantis girls’ basketball this year and in the future.”
Bowles had just returned from a four-day team camp trip with his varsity players at Oklahoma Baptist University. The Yantis players went 6-3 in league play and 1-1 in the single elimination tournament on Monday, losing by just two points to a 3A school.
Carrillo, a product of Winnsboro's Buddy Hawkins program, will be assisting in the upcoming Yantis basketball camp to be held on July 20-23. “Having played for Buddy Hawkins is a huge plus to me,” added Bowles. “He is one of the state's most successful coaches, she knows his system, and that allows her to draw from a local legend.”
Sulphur Springs did not make the playoffs during Carrillo's stint, but this didn't deter Bowles in his decision. “The best coaches aren't always the most successful. Sulphur Springs girls' basketball is low in pecking order, and that makes it tough to win. She did a good job there, and came highly recommended,” said Bowles. Carrillo will be replacing former Lady Owls coach Jennifer Payne.
"It was a last minute decision. I did not really consider it until the second time the job was posted on the board," Carrillo added. "Actually it was three days before the interview. It is really hard to explain. I don't really like change."
“Our girls are going to be really pushed both on and off the court. She will be embraced by, not only our girls, but also our community. Our girls are going to love her competitiveness and her passion. Her passion will endear the girls to her,” Bowles said. “She will also be very active in Little Dribblers, basketball camp, summer league, and team camps. Those are things we agree that you must have to be highly competitive.”
Carrillo commented that she was enticed by the support in the Yantis program along with the appealing setup. "I was satisfied. I am going to miss all of it, the kids, administration," Carrillo recalled on her four years at Sulphur Springs. "I wasn't looking to leave, but something inside me said it was time for a change. So far the transition has been easy."
Carrillo just finished up the Sulphur Springs girls basketball camp. "The camp went well, but we didn't have quite as many participants as usual," she said.
The position at Yantis entails that the coach will supervise girls basketball from sixth grade pre-athletics through the varsity level, requiring a high expectancy for organization.
"It will all depend on player personnel," Carrillo said on the offensive and defensive plays planned for the upcoming Yantis Lady Owls basketball season. "I might be using some of the same methods; it will depend on their speed." Carrillo will have an almost new gym at her disposal for basketball, and a new softball field to utilize her head softball coaching skills.
"My first job out of college was the head softball coach at Winnsboro," explained Carrillo, holding that position for three years. She will also teach World History, health, and physical education.
"I left it in God's hands for him to open or close the door on this job," said Carrillo. Her husband and Sulphur Springs coach, David Carrillo, will continue at his current position overseeing their children Jesse, 7, and Ryan, 5, as they will continue to attend Sulphur Springs.
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