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Simmons Says - 20/20 vision of 2020

Now I have closed in on a decade of writing sports at the Southern Standard, editor James Clark has entrusted me with his most valuable resource, one he used countless times when he served at the sports reporter. He gave me the crystal ball, one he used for years to project the fates of countless Pioneer teams. 

Never one to show patience, I immediately started searching for answers about 2020. I wanted to know what would be the biggest sports stories of the year – and I believe I have the answers.

Here’s what me and my crystal ball are seeing for 2020:

WCHS boys basketball is at home for its first region game

Coach Chris Sullens has pushed the Pioneers to new heights in the last five years, but one thing has still eluded the team. Warren County has always had to travel in the postseason, especially when it gets past the district tournament. 

I’m seeing a short drive for me this February when the region tournament begins. With a top-two finish in the district tournament, the Pioneers will be at Charlie Dalton Gym when they try to push deep into the postseason for the second time in three years. 

Phillip King makes 

a big splash

Last spring, all the attention on the diamond turned to the Lady Pioneers. It was rightfully so as Gooby Martin guided his girls to their first region championship and a trip to substate.

King is going to make games at Patrick Ramsey Field must-see events again.

The crystal ball isn’t showing a region championship under King in his first year, but a district championship doesn’t look cloudy. With Jack Keele back on the mound, and King’s son Grant King adding another arm to the arsenal, the Pioneers possess the pitching needed to down Disrict 6AAA opponents.

Pioneer football

makes the playoffs

Warren County hasn’t earned its bid into the playoffs since 2008 (Trips in 2015-16 were guaranteed for teams which went 1-9 and 2-8, respectively, in the regular season). The 2020 Pioneers will be the first to grind out enough victories in the region to get back to the postseason.

Taking it a step further, the crystal ball is also showing the Pioneers finishing the year with a winning record, something that hasn’t happened in 30 years.

Led by Matt Turner, Warren County will continue to make huge strides on the gridiron. Football is the early favorite to produce the top story of 2020.

Who knows what could be in store though? I may have the crystal ball, but I’m still learning how to use it.