Red Bay's Roberts Notches 800th Career Victory


                                                           By KEITH LETBETTER
                                              Red Bay News (Special to the AHSAA)

    Red Bay High School girls coach Donnie Roberts notched the 800th win of his long prep basketball coaching career Jan. 25 as the Lady Tigers beat Colbert Heights 64-37. The Lady Tigers improved to 22-2 this season with the win.
    Roberts, who has compiled an 800-346 overall record in his 41-year coaching career, is now the state’s career wins leader for girls basketball and the first in state history to win 800 games.  He will be inducted into the Alabama High School Athletic Association Sports Hall of Fame in March as a member of the Class of 2014.

   “It’s not about me,” he said. “It’s about how fortunate my career has been at Red Bay and the 10 years Icoached at Tremont (Ms.). All I can do is thank the kids that played for me. They had a lot more to do with it than Idid.

   After earning a Master’s Degree from Mississippi State University, he returned to his alma mater, Tremont High School just across the state line from Red Bay and compiled a 142-127 record in the next 10 seasons. Roberts moved to Red Bay in 1983 and began working on the goal of making that first trip to Birmingham for the state playoffs.
    “I came here and took over a team that was 9-11 the year before. We had a real good year that first year and we went 19-5,” Roberts said.

    Roberts, who owns a 658-219 girls coaching record at Red Bay, led the Lady Tigers to state championships in 1987, 1993, 2001 and most recently directed Red Bay to the 2012 Class 2A state finals, a 54-49 loss to Section. Last year Roberts’ team won the Northwest Regional again and lost in the Final 48 semifinals.
     “It takes a combination of things to have a state championship program. It does take coaching, but it also takes pride in our program from our girls.”

      Roberts said that it also takes the involvement of the community.

“Everybody here is involved in it,”said Roberts. They back us and support us. The community likes to see us do well.

      Roberts said that over the years some of the best memories he has is that of having the opportunity to coach both of his daughters, Laura Beth and Leah.

“I think it’s rare to have coached two daughters and to have those two daughters on two different teams win state championships. I can tell you it’s a great experience.”


All 6 Defending Football Champs Make 2nd Round

Complete 2nd Round Pairings

        All six defending state champions posted first-round victories and now advance as the Alabama High School Athletic Association state football playoffs move into the second round Friday (Nov. 11). All games are scheduled for 7 p.m.
            Defending 1A state champion Sweet Water (8-3) beat Keith 48-26 and will go to Winterboro (10-1) this week. Class 2A defending champ Leroy (7-4) downed Isabella 54-22 and will travel to Highland Home (8-3).
        Leeds (9-2), the defending 3A state titlist, edged Abbeville 28-27 and will host Gordo (8-3). Class 4A returning champ Thomasville (10-1) goes to Dadeville (11-0) after beating West Blocton 55-6 and Class 5A defending champion Spanish Fort (8-3) stopped Fairfield 31-7 and will host Valley (9-2).
        In Class 6A, defending state champ Daphne (10-1) beat Opelika 49-31 and will travel to Prattville (8-2).
        A total of 17 unbeaten teams advanced to the second round: Class 1A: Maplesville (11-0) and Ragland (11-0); Class 2A: Elba (11-0), Fyffe (11-0) and Tanner (11-0); Class 3A: Handley (11-0), Bayside Academy (11-0) and Piedmont (11-0); Class 4A: Jackson (11-0), Dadeville (11-0), Bibb County (11-0) and North Jackson (11-0); Class 5A: Greenville (11-0), Hueytown (11-0) and Hartselle (11-0); Class 6A: Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa (11-0) and Mountain Brook (11-0).
       The quarterfinal round playoff games are scheduled Friday, Nov. 18, followed by the semifinals Nov. 25 and the Super 6 state finals Dec. 1-2 at Bryant-Denny Stadium on the campus of the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.