By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Sideline sisters
Shea Panter.jpg
Shea Panter runs a huddle during a Lady Pioneer home game. Panter just completed her fifth year coaching the Warren County High School girls team. She’s been coaching locally since 2006, splitting time between WCMS and WCHS. - photo by Jeffery Simmons
Jasmine Evans.jpg
Jasmine Evans greets Eden Grissom as she leaves the floor during an Irving College home game. Evans is a homegrown coaching talent, having played basketball for Irving College and WCHS. She’s in her first year coaching Irving College, which completed the regular season undefeated and will be in action in the the elementary semifinals Monday. - photo by Jeffery Simmons

It would be easy to not know the relationship between Shea Panter and Jasmine Evans. After all, the siblings don’t look all that similar and their names don’t link up. 

Put them on a basketball court though and it becomes obvious. The sport both exceled in growing up brings out their competitive spirit. And in those moments, even when they’re on opposite ends of the county, the sisters can seem like the same person.

Irving College fans are getting their first glimpse of Evans this year, as she leads the currently unbeaten Lady Tigers. Panter is more widely recognized, having coached the WCHS girls team for the last five years.

And if you’re in both fan bases, it’s not a shock to find out they’re related.

“They are both similar with their dedication. They both focus on fundamentals,” said Callie Cathcart, who played the past four seasons for Panter and who has a little sister currently playing for Evans. “They both seem to be pretty passionate for the game of basketball. I haven’t gotten to see Jasmine’s practice, but her and Shea will work all week. We always ran after misses and I had heard Jasmine does that too.”

Terry Panter tries to watch both his kids coach as much as possible. What he’s seen of Evans and Panter on the sidelines is eerily similar to what he saw when they were wearing jerseys.

“I think both coach a lot like they played,” said Terry. “Jasmine was an aggressive player, very physical. At an early age, Shea always knew where to go and who to get the ball to each play.

“On the sidelines, all that comes out. Jasmine is more animated, jumping up and down. Shea is always studying the action.”

Shea got started in basketball at WCMS, but moved to Chelsea, Ala., before her eight-grade season. Growing into an Alabama high school basketball star, Panter went on to earn a scholarship to the University of Montevallo, earning team MVP honors in 2003. 

Evans, then Jasmine Ware, was just wrapping up high school when Panter was finishing college. A star Lady Tiger in her younger days, Evans would spend the next two years at Roane State playing softball and basketball.

Evans concedes that even though she was good enough to play at the college level, her older sister was the better baller back in their playing days.

“Shea was awesome. I was decent,” admits Evans. 

They’ve never lost their passion for basketball after their playing days ended.

Panter has been coaching locally since 2006, when she took over as 5-6 grade coach at WCMS. Evans just got back into the game this year, though she did spend one season coaching the Boyd Lady Broncos in 2010-11. 

Panter and Evans rarely shared the court together, even in their younger years. No backyard 1-on-1 battles would erupt when the duo got together. Even now, when the sisters link up, basketball isn’t a topic of conversation.

Family time is a chance to take a break.

“They hang out together, like to go kayaking together,” said Vanessa Panter. 

The sisters share a mutual admiration, even though their schedules make it hard to see the other practice their craft. 

“Shea loves basketball. She really cares about the game,” said Jasmine. “Her passion is obvious. She wants to succeed and for her players to learn and grow.”

“I think it’s great to have coaches, like Jasmine, who played and love the game teaching our kids,” Shea added.

They aren’t likely to share the same bench anytime soon though. Evans, also a teacher at Irving College, loves her gig at the school where she grew up just down the road. She wants to do something as a coach that she did as a player, help bring a championship to Irving College.

“I’ve really enjoyed this year and this group. The girls work hard and we’re hoping to accomplish big things,” said Evans. “I want to continue to help build our Irving College program.”

The whole family tries to show up to support both coaches, often forming loud cheering sections for the Lady Tigers and Lady Pioneers.

Game nights have turned into family time for the sisters on the sidelines.