DHS girls’ hoops celebrate 40 years

DERON TALLEY, EDITOR @DeRonTalley
Members of the Donaldsonville High girls’ basketball 1974 team were honored during the DHS-Lutcher game Friday at the DHS Gym. They stand together after the game with current members of the DHS girls’ basketball team.

The Donaldsonville High girls’ basketball team reached a major milestone Friday night – 40 years of existence. During the halftime of the game against Lutcher, the members of the 1974 founding team, once again, took the court.

Nine members of the founding team showed up, which include: Lizzie Caldwell Jackson, Debbie Brown Perkins, Thera Jarvis Landry, Linda Canty Williams, Valerie Debose, Angela Bonadona Miles, Cynthia Buggage (1975 team), Theresa Price, Wanda Caldwell and Leana Chatman. Members who were not in attendance: Trena Whittington, Patti Latino, Julie Mallory, Tammy Martin, Vera Singleton, Cathy Foster, and Blair Davidson. The head coach of the pioneering team was Annie Nichols who passed away; she was represented by her daughter.

Chatman coordinated the efforts to bring the team together to be honored and celebrated, spending years of preparation and research. After, Chatman said 40 years is a long time and it was a joy being with her teammates it was like old times.

“It was great. We had a nice time and we really enjoyed it,” Chatman said. “Words cannot express the feeling. It’s been so long and the one from Georgia I hadn’t seen her in over 20 years.”

The one who traveled from Georgia was Thera Jarvis Landry, who was the founding team’s starting point guard. Jarvis Landry said it was great seeing her fellow teammates after the years, and it brought back a lot of memories from her high school days.

“I really have no words. It’s very, very exciting,” Jarvis Landry said. “I really enjoyed myself and it was so good to see the next generation of girls, they are really good.”

Jarvis Landry said current DHS senior point guard Xenet Carter really reminded her of herself when she played.

“She was on fire and all over the place and always after the ball, that was me,” Jarvis Landry said about Carter, who led the Lady Tigers in victory with 12 points.

Current DHS girls’ head coach Nikeyah Walker said after the game it was great to be able to honor the founding team.

“I wasn’t around at that time but it’s great to see the faces that pioneered this program and I’m glad we were able to show them the legacy that they left,” Walker said.

Chatman added about the win, “it definitely added some sweetness to it.”