Celebrating Basketball and Soccer Teams, and A Great New Hire

Varsity Boys Basketball

In 2014, the FHS basketball team was struggling through a tough 0-23 season, playing before sparse crowds.  Fast forward 4 years to Senior Night 2018, and the difference is amazing!  This championship team took the court one win from a 20-game win season, an unbeaten league record, and heading into the playoffs as a top seed.

Things have changed dramatically since Coach Wes Davis took the program over, 4 years ago.  On Senior Night 2018, the gym was full of electricity and enthusiastic, vocal fans; some college coaches were there to scout the talent, and great players from the 1988 State Championship Team returned to inspire the team and fans.  For old-time fans, this night was reminiscent of the “golden era” when standing-room-only crowds were the norm for basketball games and wrestling meets, and the football stadium was full with some games having to be moved to the BC Stadium to accommodate the larger 5 figure-sized crowds.

The cheerleaders and pep band are super, and they not only provide great cheers and entertainment, but have the vocal fans roaring during the game and timeouts. These Trojans play a very exciting, fast-paced game of entertaining, crowd-pleasing basketball that is fun to watch. The loyalty and blood lines to current basketball success is quickly evidenced by those former players who return to support the team.

Admiring Arthur Charles' Championship Ring
Admiring Arthur Charles’ Championship Ring

Arthur Charles, a member of the 1988 State Championship team, gave a great locker room speech of what it takes to be a  champion, win as a team, and advance in the playoffs. As players passed around his championship ring, it validated the fact that this man knows what the game is all about. Art’s son is currently playing professional baseball.

Arthur Charles, Reggie Phillips and Joe Turner giving a pep talk to the team
Arthur Charles, Reggie Phillips and Joe Turner giving a pep talk to the team

Reggie “Air” Phillips — also known as “The Human Helicopter” for his great vertical leap and his highlight moves above the rim — spoke of other facets of basketball in his pre-game speech. In addition to being on the 1988 team, Reggie also played on an undefeated 33-0 National Championship team at Cal State Bakersfield, was a long-time player for the Harlem Globetrotters and is a member of the FHS Athletic Hall of Fame. Reggie’s nephew, Jaden, has some of that same DNA, and is so talented he is starting on the varsity team as a freshman! He has a great outside shot, and also has the ability to drive past defenders and beat them to the hoop.

Joe Turner, Edward "Squid" Turner, Jaden Phillips and Reggie Phillips
Joe Turner, Edward “Squid” Turner, Jaden Phillips and Reggie Phillips

Joe Turner, a former FHS player, coach and FHS Athletic Hall of Fame member as well, was also in the locker room to offer his advice and support. Joe played for the University of Arizona and was on teams that made the Final Four two times.  His teammate and roommate was NBA great Steve Kerr, who is currently the coach of the World Champion Golden State Warriors. Joe also played professional basketball in Australia, New Zealand, and Europe. Joe’s son, Edward “Squid” Turner, is having a great season and is certainly a fan favorite.

Coach Wes Davis and seniors on Senior Night
Coach Wes Davis and seniors on Senior Night

While he has a nice outside shot, it is his thunderous slam dunks and defensive “swats” that ignite the team and cause spectators to stand and go wild. Edward is now on the University of Arizona’s recruit list, so there is a possibility he might follow in dad’s footsteps.

Congratulations to the Trojans, Coach Davis and his staff on a great season and we wish them well in the playoffs. Coach Davis will return 3 of the 5 starters next season — Edward Turner (Junior), Jaden Phillips (Freshman) and Cesar Valdez (Junior) — so FHS fans can anticipate a good thing next season as well.

Varsity Girls Soccer

Coach Gerardo “Junior” Castaneyra’s team has had a great season as well! Their outstanding 15-4-2 record has guaranteed them a high seed in the upcoming playoffs and we wish them well!

Band, cheerleaders and students preparing to welcome Coach Deckard
Band, cheerleaders and students preparing to welcome Coach Deckard

Foothill Hires New Football Coach

Foothill has announced that 43 year old Brandon Deckard will become the new Varsity Head Football Coach.  Brandon and his wife Liz, were welcomed to Foothill by a large contingent of cheerleaders, band music, cheering students and players, as well as a host of TV and news media.

At this meet and greet session, Coach Deckard thanked Foothill and stated his initial focus.

New Varsity Head Football Coach, Brandon Deckard
New Varsity Head Football Coach, Brandon Deckard

“My immediate goals are to assemble a coaching staff and get more students out for football. We want the coaching staff, players and all of Foothill to be enthusiastic. I want players to join this team because we are going to have fun, and we want to right this ship”.

Coach Deckard has 17 years of coaching experience including 3 years as the Head Coach at Kern Valley High.  But just like Coach Davis, he inherits a program that has fallen on hard times. The Trojans are coming off a 1-8 season, and have a 6-42 record over the past 5 seasons.

Coach Davis welcomes Coach Deckard
Coach Davis welcomes Coach Deckard

He knows this is not an easy, quick fix, but has accepted the challenge to do what it takes to turn the program around, and certainly welcomes community support.  We wish Coach Deckard a long, successful career, and hope he can enjoy the same journey and turn-around success in his program that Coach Davis has experienced in his.

Best wishes to all teams…….it is a great time to be a Trojan!  Be sure to mark April 7th on your calendar as the night of our 6th Athletic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.