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Story Archives: Vidalia basketball team headed to Tech
|Vidalia basketball team headed to Tech|
Dan Chase, who led Vidalia High's football team to its first-ever district championship in 1961, died June 1 at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center.
Chase was 76 and a resident of Baton Rouge.
He was buried Saturday, June 4, at Resthaven Gardens of Memory in Baton Rouge.
Chase replaced Walter Stampley as football coach at Vidalia High in 1958 when Stampley took over has principal of the school.
"Dan was an excellent math teacher and usually when you find a good teacher you have a good coach," Stampley said. "He was a hard worker and very enthusiastic. He was a real go-getter. He was always interested in the kids. He was good for us."
Chase went 5-5 in his first season in 1958 and led the Vikings to a winning record, 5-4 in 1959.
Under Chase, the Vikings went 11-0 in 1961, including a perfect 5-0 record in district for the school's first district title.
Sicily Island also finished 5-0 in District 3B and the two teams had to play each other to decide the championship. Vidalia won the game, 32-6.
The Vikings had to play Plain Dealing two days later and fell in the first round playoff contest, 13-7.
Vidalia repeated as district champions the following year, going 7-3-1, but lost to South Cameron 14-13 in a first-round playoff contest.
In Chase's final year in 1963, the Vikings went 10-1, losing a district game to Newellton.
Chase was in his first head coaching job at Vidalia High and was the youngest high school head coach in Louisiana football history at the age of 23. He compiled a 44-16-2 record at Vidalia.
Chase coached the 1962 Vidalia team which shut out Ferriday 13-0 at Melz Field, the first time in about 20 years the Bulldogs were held scoreless on their home field.
Chase was replaced by Fred Foster, who was an assistant coach under Chase.
"Dan was the best I ever coached with," Foster said, attempting to hold back the tears. "He was a good teacher and a disciplinarian. He didn't have to tell something but once. He was a good motivator and had his players ready to play. He believed in fundamentals."
Chase played football at Northwestern with Ferriday's James "Red" McNew in the 1950s.
Chase was a guard, while McNew played quarterback.
"Dan was a hard worker and a real student of the game," McNew said. "He did a lot of good things for Northwestern. We played against each other in high school, then were teammates after that. I am really going to miss him."
Chase was brought to Vidalia by former Ferriday head football coach Hugh Bateman because Bateman was looking for a math teacher.
Chase was also the founder of Dan Chase Taxidermy Supply and enjoyed success as an entrepreneur by pioneering the mass production of polyurethane mannequins for taxidermy uses.
Chase is survived by his wife of 55 years, Lilly Waltman Chase, two daughters, Martha Chase Bryant and spouse Kevin, and Lisa Chase Potter and spouse Gary; grandchildren, Jason and Jeremy Blakeney, Jake Causey and wife Christon, Josh Causey and wife Melinda, and Jared Causey; great-grandchildren, Jade Blakeney, Emmie Cooper, Trent, Jaycee, and Brant Causey; siblings, Martha Chase Moss and Edgar "Poop" Chase; sister-in-law, Louise Cooley; brother-in-law, William Waltman and wife Faye; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family asked that donations may be made to the Hope Center in Marksville or the Natchez Children's Home in Natchez.
Hazel Brallier experienced a couple of firsts on and off the softball field two months ago as the Lady Wolves advanced to the Louisiana Fast Pitch 56 and her daughter Monique gave birth to her first grandchild — all in the same week.
Tristan Asher Bryan was born on April 27, two days before the Lady Wolves competed in their fist-ever quarterfinal playoff contest.
"It was quite a week," Brallier said. "I took off Wednesday when she had the baby and then went to practice, went back and forth Thursday and then went to school at 1 o'clock Friday when we left for Sulpher. But it was all worth it."
Monterey fell to Grand Lake in the quarterfinals. Grand Lake had been to the state tournament several times before and is only a few miles from Sulphur.
For Monterey's accomplishments, Brallier and Lady Wolf junior pitcher Ellen Bairnsfather are the 2011 All-Parish Coach and Player of the Year.
Monterey had been to the playoffs seven times since 2003, losing in the first round six times. The Lady Wolves suffered one-run losses in the first round three times. Monterey lost to Weston 7-4 in the second round in 2006.But history would be made as the Lady Wolves defeated Harrisonburg 16-1 in the first round and eliminated Zwolle 8-4 in the second round .
District 6B foe Oak Hill captured the state championship, beating Holden 2-0. Holden beat Avoyelles Charter, also a member of District 6B in the semifinals.
The Lady Wolves, who beat Oak Hill 11-3 during the regular season, finished second in District 6B behind the state champion.
"I think we had a great year," said Brallier, who is the 2011 Coach of the Year. "I really enjoyed working with the girls. They all got along so well. It was a great experience and we hope to make it back there."
Brallier loses two seniors (Taylor Morace and Logan Dale) and Sarah Sims, a freshman whose family moved away.
"Competing with Oak Hill helped us during the year as well as Avoyelles Charter," Brallier said.
The Lady Wolves lose Glenmora and Harrisonburg, who move down to Class C, but pick up Grace Christian.
"We're going to try and play different teams and in a tournament at ULM next season to get even more ready," Brallier said.
Brallier, and Monterey junior Ellen Bairnsfather lead the All-Parish team, as Bairnsfather is the Player of the Year for the second time in three years.
Bairnsfather posted an impressive 0.58 earned run average over 98 1/3 innings. She struck out 81 and walked 22. The junior Lady Wolf batted .326 and scored 36 runs.
"It was amazing getting to go to Sulphur," Bairnsfather. "I loved it. I hate we didn't play well. It was so loud and we had never been in that situation before."
Bairnsfather was also part of a 2010-11 girls basketball team that played the first-ever playoff game at home, defeating Converse 64-46.
The Lady Wolves roundball team fell to Ouitman 50-40 in the second round.
"I think that helped us because we knew if we did well in basketball we could do well in softball," Bairnsfather said.
Bairnsfather pitched against Oak Hill in the second meeting between both teams as the Lady Wolves upset the eventual state champ, 11-3.
"That was great," Bairnsfather said. "That's the highlight of my high school career so far."
Bairnsfather believes the Lady Wolves have a great chance to return to Sulphur next season.
"I'm going to be the only senior, so I know everybody will be counting on me for leadership," she said.
Rounding out the pitching staff is Monterey's Paige Bryan and Vidalia sophomore Laura Perrilloux.
Perrilloux was 9-16 with a 2.95 earned run average. She struck out 67 batters over 159 inning and walked 39.
Bryan, a freshman, had a 1.28 ERA, striking out 67, while walking 20. She batted .279.
Rounding out the team are Monterey senior Taylor Morace, Lady Wolf freshman Ashlee Wilson, Monterey freshman Karlee Woodruff, Lady Wolf sophomore Bailey New, Vidalia junior Kennedy Beard, Lady Viking junior Kelsee Partridge and Lady Viking senior Lauren Secrest.
Morace batted .352, while Wilson hit .293.
Woodruff led the Lady Wolves with a .365 batting average with 21 RBIs and led the Lady Wolves with two home runs.
New batted .289 and had a home run.
Beard batted .311 with one home run and 10 runs batted in.
Partridge led the Lady Vikings with a .407 batting average with two home runs, 12 doubles and three triples, while batting in 25 runs.
Secrest hit .380 with six doubles and 16 RBIs.
By Jake Martin
The Vidalia High boys basketball team will travel to the 2011 Louisiana Tech Team Camp in Ruston Friday and Saturday where they will play five games.
The Vikings will play against Jonesboro-Hodge and Parkers Chapel Friday at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., respectively.
Parkers Chapel is located in El Dorado, Ar.
The Vikings will finish out their tournament run Saturday when they face Mansfield, Lakeside and Choudrant starting at 9 a.m.
Viking head coach Robert Sanders said that he looks for his team to gain valuable playing time Friday and Saturday.
"We're going to be looking to get more experience from these tournaments," Sanders said.
The tournament will be played in two different locations.
The Vikings game against Parkers Chapel Friday will be played in Thomas Assembly Center, while the rest of the Vikings games will be played in Lambright Center.
Each game will consist of two halves, each lasting 20 minutes with halftimes of three minutes if the game starts on time.
Sanders reiterates how important this tournament is for the team and the upcoming season.
Sanders lost 11 seniors from last year's team which went 14-11 overall and 10-2 in District 3-3A, defeating Avoyelles in a tiebreaker for first place. The Vikings lost to Redemptorist in a Class 3A first round playoff game.
"It's going to be a growing up process for them," Sanders said. "Only three of (returning players) had experience playing on varsity last year. Only one of them played on varsity."
The Ferriday boys' and girls' teams don't have any tournaments lined up for the summer, but Lady Trojans head coach Lisa Abron said she plans on working out and playing local teams similar to last year.
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