April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (2024)

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (1)

By Wesley Harris

Joe Cowell is leaving his Haughton home this week to travel north Arkansas to view a total eclipse of the sun, an adventure on a lifelong “bucket list.”

It’s the best opportunity he will have to check it off the list since the next total solar eclipse will not occur until 2044.

Even though northwest Louisiana will experience a partial eclipse of 95-96%, Joe wants to full experience of complete coverage of the sun by the moon’s shadow.

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“This has been on my bucket list a long time,” Cowell said, “and this is my best chance. We’re going to watch from a place directly on the path of the eclipse.”

To get the full effect of the total eclipse, viewers will want to be directly on its path. Thus, eclipse tourists are going to Texas, Arkansas, and other states that will be crossed by the eclipse’s center line.

Cowell has located a spot in Arkansas on the center line because he wants to experience the daytime darkness of the total eclipse.

Everyone in the continental U. S. will see at least a partial eclipse, ranging from 16% at the northwestern tip of Washington State to 100% along the center line. A narrow band of complete eclipse will cross portions of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

The first opportunity to see the eclipse in the U. S. will be at Las Quintas Fronterizas, Texas, at 1:27:21 p.m. CDT, according to NASA.

This eclipse will be the most-viewed ever. It has received more media attention of any previous total eclipse. It will pass close to millions of people who can access it from large cities located near the eclipse path.

Authorities along the path expect traffic jams and shortages of gas as small communities are overwhelmed by visitors.

Places in the region expected to be inundated by total eclipse watchers include Kerrville, Lampasas, Hillsboro, and Sulphur Springs, Texas; Russellville, Arkansas; and Cape Giradeau, Missouri. While the phenomenon will come close to San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas, watchers will have to travel into the countryside to view a total eclipse.

The National Weather Service predicts Lincoln Parish will experience slightly less than a total eclipse with the moon covering 95% of the sun. However, NWS’s long-range computer models show north Louisiana may experience some cloud cover with a chance of rain on April 8.

For Lincoln Parish, the partial eclipse will start about 12:29 p.m., reach its maximum about 1:48 p.m., and end at 3:09 p.m.

NASA and astronomy experts warn to never look directly at the sun. Serious eye damage can occur, even blindness. Proper eye protection like eclipse glasses or a special solar filter are the only safe options. Sunglasses don’t work.

It’s unlikely to find eclipse glasses at this late date but a pinpoint projector can be made from items you can find around the house. NASA provides this link to instructions for creating a simple pinhole viewing device: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/edu/learn/project/how-to-make-a-pinhole-camera/

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (3)

Lincoln Parish deputies arrested a Monroe man early Thursday morning for possession of marijuana and an outstanding warrant.

Xavier T. Hargrove, 26, was stopped on Louisiana Hwy. 33 when a patrol deputy saw a white Cadillac with no visible license plate. Once the Cadillac pulled over, the deputies saw a temporary tag in the back window. In checking Hargrove’s license information, it was discovered his driver’s license had been suspended and an active warrant existed at the Ruston Police Department for his arrest.

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Hargrove was asked to exit the vehicle and he initially refused and had to be directed several times to do so. Once he was outside the vehicle, Hargrove was arrested. Deputies then saw bits of suspected marijuana on Hargroves’s clothing.

A marijuana cigarette was recovered from the Cadillac’s ashtray. Hargrove was taken to the Lincoln Parish Detention Center where he was booked for possession of marijuana, resisting an officer, driving under suspension, improper display of a license plate, and a warrant for failure to appear in court for an expired license plate charge.

This information has been provided by a law enforcement agency as public information. Persons named or shown in photographs or video as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not been convicted of any criminal offense and are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (5)

Sometimes it’s better to just sit back and watch (or in this case read).

I don’t think anyone can say that Monday night’s regional final between LSU and Iowa didn’t live up to the pre-game hype that pitted the two women’s basketball teams that faced off in last year’s national championship game.

It was entertaining to say the least.

Caitlin Clark vs. Angel Reese. Two of the top players in the women’s game (some say Clark may be the best to ever play … and it’s hard to argue). Clark has led the country in scoring and in assists for two straight years. That’s unheard of. She has changed the game in many ways with her range from beyond the arc.

Monday night’s match-up didn’t need any extra gas on the fire. It was hot enough following last year’s meeting in Dallas.

Reese’s ring finger will forever have a place in women’s basketball lore. She gave Clark “the finger” as the Iowa superstar walked towards her bench with the final seconds ticking down — not the middle one although many people think it might as well have been.

Some people said it was poor sportsmanship. Some people say Clark deserved it. Some people just sat back and enjoyed the post-game entertainment.

One thing is for sure. Based on the TV ratings and the social media explosion following Monday night, women’s basketball is alive and well. And Clark and Reese both have a lot to do with it.

Whoever invented Facebook and X and Tiktok and whatever else is out there these days simply dreamed of this kind of match-up to generate content on their sites.

As I sat back and read through social media posts following the game that night and into the rest of this week, one thing is evident. We, as fans, have a tendency to be blind to the actions of our own team but hypersensitive to the actions of everyone else.

What is okay for our team and our players and our coaches is simply deplorable for the other side. This goes way beyond LSU-Iowa, but it was sure in the spotlight for that specific game and for its participants.

What is okay for the purple and gold in the eyes of Tiger fans is simply ridiculous for the Hawkeyes. What is simply a competitive spirit for the gold and black by Hawkeye fans is unsportsmanlike for the Tigers.

In one breath, we – as fans — condemn Caitlin Clark while putting Angel Reese on a pedestal, and vice versa. You can’t have it both ways.

Sure there are some differences in some of the instances that are discussed and criticized by the media and fans alike. But they are probably minute to be honest.

I think sometimes we need to think twice before we type and then hit the submit button, although if everyone did that, it would be far less entertaining.

Although people know I am not an LSU fan — never have been — one thing I must do is defend Kim Mulkey over the national anthem controversy. In college basketball more times than not the teams are not on the floor for the playing of the national anthem.

In Conference USA, the national anthem is played when both teams are in the locker rooms. In college football, the national anthem is played when the teams are in the locker rooms.

Why? I don’t have a great answer outside of it’s just that way these days, although it hasn’t always been that way in college hoops. I can remember a time when the national anthem was played when the clock struck zero on the pregame countdown, prior to the introductions of the starting lineups.

Other sports such as baseball, softball, volleyball and soccer to name a few the student-athletes are on the fields and courts when the national anthem is played. But in today’s era, most conferences have time up the national anthem when the teams are in the lockerrooms.

Good or bad. Right or wrong. That’s the way it is in 2024.

So Iowa being on the court for the national anthem is actually more out of the norm in college basketball than the norm. This was not a case of Kim Mulkey and LSU making some sort of political statement as many media outlets and people tried to make it be.

Personally I wish all teams were on the playing fields when the national anthem is played, but let’s not make this particular instance into something its not.

I guess at the end of the day the one positive in all of this is that women’s basketball has become popular enough that more and more people are talking about.

Now back to our regular programing, or in my case, to reading more entertaining social media posts.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (6)

In the athletic world, we recognize those achieving the most impressive stats, winning the most championships, or garnering the most attention. Whether it’s scoring touchdowns, hitting home runs, or making baskets, stats get attention. Individuals garnering the post-season awards are those with the stats and public recognition.

It’s no different in the business world. We recognize the sales professional with the largest book of business, the investor with the largest portfolio growth, or the manufacturer with the most improved operating metrics. Stats tell a story that gets our attention in athletics and in the business world.

However, within every successful team or business organization, there is always more to the story than just the most valuable individual doing their thing.

Prior to many game-winning hits, there was a sacrifice bunt that allowed the at bat to be successful.

A part of many game-winning shots was an assist from a teammate that made it possible.

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During any game-winning touchdown run was a key block that made it happen.

While there is a most valuable player on any successful team, there is likely at least one, if not several, teammates that are invaluable. Invaluable meaning the accomplishments would not have been possible without them.

Those are the teammates that are willing to do the small, unsung things that enable the team to be successful. Those are the individuals that take great pride in being great teammates. They bring out the best in others, sacrifice for others, and are willing to do all the “small” things that lead to big success. They are the encouragers when times are tough, the hard workers that establish the standards, and the grinders when the path is difficult.

The business world is no different.

The individual that works behind the scenes to lay a foundation for others to shine out front is an example.

The individual that defers to a colleague to ensure the organization is aligned in approaching a commercial opportunity is another example.

The individual that quietly does the research, develops the strategy, improves the system, or removes an obstacle to allow others to excel in the organization is yet another example.

There are many more examples of invaluable people that often go unnoticed, unrecognized, and sometimes unappreciated for their contributions. These individuals are core to the success of any operation.

Just like any successful athletic team, a successful business organization goes beyond just recognizing the most valuable and notices those that are invaluable. A healthy team is comprised of various individuals with different skill sets, coming from different backgrounds, providing different contributions while working together to pursue a common purpose.

How healthy is your team? Are you recognizing those invaluable people that just make others around them better? What about you personally? Are you seeking the spotlight of most valuable or are you willing to pursue another role if that’s what your team/organization needs at the present time?

How you answer those questions may just be the key to success in 2024!

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (8)

A Ruston man was arrested early Sunday morning after he was stopped following a call by another motorist.

At about 1 a.m. Thursday, Ladarrian D. Alexander, 32, was stopped after a citizen call reporting a driver swerving all over the road. Officers detected a strong odor of alcoholic beverages on Alexander’s breath. He also exhibited indications of intoxication. However, Alexander said he had had nothing to drink and refused to undergo field sobriety testing.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (9)

Alexander was arrested and taken to the Lincoln Parish Detention Center. He revealed he had been arrested previously for first offense DWI in December 2023. He refused to provide a breath sample for analysis at the detention center.

Alexander was booked for an open container in his vehicle, no proof of insurance., and second offense DWI with child endangerment. He reportedly had two children under the age of 10 in the vehicle with him.

Bail was set at $5,000.

This information has been provided by a law enforcement agency as public information. Persons named or shown in photographs or video as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not been convicted of any criminal offense and are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (10)

Tri Deltas are dedicated to helping children live, scientists learn and St. Jude further its mission of finding cures for childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.

Since 1999, Delta Delta Delta has raised more than $96 Million for St. Jude kids. Because of their momentous efforts, St. Jude named its on-campus, short-term housing facility Tri Delta Place, a home away from home for patient families.

Because of generous donors, families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food, so they can focus on helping their child live.

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Members fundraise through events like social media fundraising challenges and events like Delta House of Pancakes (DHOP). One of these fundraising events is happening in Ruston this weekend!

The LA Tech Tri Delta chapter would like to invite the community to their annual DHOP at the Tri Delta lodge on Hestia Lane on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tickets may be purchased at this link. Simply show a screenshot of a donation of $5 or more for all you can eat pancakes Saturday morning.

The women of Tri Delta hope to see the Ruston community come together to help St. Jude defeat childhood cancer, and enjoy some delicious pancakes.

About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.® It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to more than 80% since the hospital opened in 1962.

St. Jude won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Because of generous donors, families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food, so they can focus on helping their child live. Visit St. Jude Inspire to discover powerful St. Jude stories of hope, strength, love and kindness. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and TikTok, and subscribing to its YouTube channel.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (12)

By T. Scott Boatright

The Choudrant Aggies baseball team is known for persistently making contact with the baseball.

And Aggies baseball families and friends are becoming more and more known for their tires from making contact with U.S. Hwy. 167 heading north.

The pipeline connecting Choudant to southern Arkansas became even stronger on Wednesday as pitcher/third baseman Eli Callendar inked scholarship papers to continue his hardball career at South Ark Community College in El Dorado, Arkansas.

He isn’t the first.

Two years ago Lady Aggies hoops standout Kylie Portilloz started the recent Choudrant to Arkansas trend by signing to play for South Ark, where she has starred the past two seasons.

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Then this time last year, the pipeline got even stronger with three Aggies baseball players accepting scholarships to continue their college athletics careers in southern Arkansas, with catcher/first baseman Gavin Murphy and pitcher Bryce McGuire signing with South Ark while pitcher/utility player Landon Hennen inking to play for National Park College in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

And now Callendar is continuing the trend by choosing South Ark as the place to continue his baseball career.

“It’s a good feeling knowing I have guys up there I can trust and count on and just having people there that I’m comfortable with,” Callendar said. “I met the coach and he’s just like coach Antley — Tony (former CHS head coach and principal Tony Antley). He’s one of the nicest men you’ll ever meet and is a really good coach. It just seemed like a good fit for me going up there.”

Callendar said it’s confidence that he’ll bring with him from Choudrant to South Ark.

“Being confident in myself — making it the distance in state championships and wins and just knowing that I can do it,” Callendar said. “Striking out college guys —- it’s a whole different level up there and just being confident, not down on myself all of the time.”

Callendar said he believes South Ark plans on using him on the mound at the next level.

“The coach might want me to play a little third (base). I’m not sure, but I think they just want to use me as a pitcher,” Callendar said.

Callendar said the timing of when he pitches on the next level isn’t a concern.

“I’ll do whatever they need me to,” Callendar said. “I ‘d like to be a starter, but I think I’d do better closing because then I’d just come in, shut them down and win the game for us. Just bring more energy to the game.”

Callendar said he wants to use the opportunity to get stronger and improve in hopes of moving on to a Division I program after finishing his two years as a Star.

“I’d like to go there for two years and then look at Division I programs,” said Callendar, who at this point is interested in majoring in physical therapy. “I want to get stronger, quicker, faster —- just whatever makes baseball players better. I just want to make my pitching better altogether.”

CHS Principal Chris Jones said Callendar can score from any aspect in life.

“”Eli is a fantastic kid,” Jones said. “I did discipline for eight years and never saw Eli once in my office for any kind of discipline-related issue. Our teachers love him. He takes care of his business in the classroom and will definitely do well wherever he goes.

“He’s got a good work ethic and played basketball for several years for us and was a fantastic teammate on the court. He made the decision this year to go into baseball full-time and that paid off for him. He’s a fantastic kid, and I wish we had 440 more just like him.”

Academics … check. Athletics … check,.

But current CHS Head Baseball Coach Joel Antley said the secret lies between Callendar’s mind and arm.

“We knew early on he was a pitcher, but we had to find a spot for him when he wasn’t on the mound,” Antley said. “He could field. We could see he could make the throw from third or the mound. He can sure throw.”

And throw he will for South Ark for the next two years.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (14)

From 1948 until 1953, David was the president of Columbia University in New York City.During his tenure as president of the university, David hired an artist, Thomas Stephens, to paint a portrait of his wife.As the painter worked, David, who had no previous interest in painting, became spellbound.He was fascinated that the artist could transform a blank canvas into something so beautiful.Perhaps he was biased because the subject of the painting was his wife, but David was amazed at how each brush stroke transformed the canvas from nothingness into something beautiful.David had never been interested in painting, but now he wondered if he could capture someone’s likeness on canvas as Thomas Stephens had.

David stretched a white dust cloth on the bottom of a box for a canvas and attempted to copy his wife’s portrait.When finished, David showed his painting to his wife and Thomas.David described the painting as “weird and wonderful to behold,” and added, “we all laughed heartily.”Thomas asked if he could keep David’s painting as a keepsake.In exchange, Thomas sent David a painting kit which David thought was a “sheer waste of money.”David’s true passion was playing golf, but when he was unable to play golf due to rain or other circ*mstances, he painted.

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In a 1950 letter to Winston Churchill, David wrote, “I have a lot of fun since I took it up, in my somewhat miserable way, your hobby of painting. I have had no instruction, have no talent, and certainly no justification for covering nice, white canvas with the kind of daubs that seem constantly to spring from my brushes. Nevertheless, I like it tremendously, and in fact, have produced two or three things that I like enough to keep.”He described his portrait paintings as “magnificent audacity,” and burned most of them.Unlike Churchill who enjoyed spending hours outside painting landscapes, if the weather was good enough for David to sit outside and paint, it was good enough for golf.

When David’s tenure with Columbia University was over, David continued to paint.He had a small studio on the second floor of the house he lived in where he would paint for 10 minutes before lunch.Rather than using his paintings as a way to express his inner self, David preferred to reproduce what he saw before him.Normally, he would attach a photograph to one side of his canvas and attempt to paint what he saw.

David had no false pride in his artistic abilities, but he enjoyed painting and never gave it up.In the last 20 years of his life, he painted about 260 paintings.In 1967, when some of David’s paintings were displayed at a show in a New York art museum, David told reporter Richard Cohen, “Let’s get something straight here, Cohen.They would have burned this [expletive] a long time ago if I weren’t the President of the United States.”The house where David had the small painting studio on the second floor was the White House.In addition to being a painter, golfer, and the President of the United States, David was five-star Army general and Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe, Dwight David “Ike” Eisenhower.

Sources:

1.Jonathan Alter, “Bush Nostalgia Is Overrated, but His Book of Paintings Is Not,”New York Times,April 17, 2017,https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/17/books/review/george-w-bush-portraits-of-courage.html.

2.“Eisenhower Paintings,” The White House Historical Association,https://www.whitehousehistory.org/galleries/eisenhower-paintings.

3.“President Eisenhower: The Painter,” The White House Historical Association,https://www.whitehousehistory.org/president-eisenhower-the-painter.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (16)

Courtesy of LA Tech Athletic Communications

Louisiana Tech’s Kylee Trexler was named the Conference USA Freshman of the Year on Wednesday, as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

Since her first day as the starting leadoff bowler, Trexler has been a force to be reckoned with, immediately impacting the lineup. Her consistent performance has seen her finish inside the top 25 in three of the team’s nine tournaments.

The Indiana ­­­native has proven herself on the lanes and has made her case to be the top freshman in the country. She ranks No. 1 among freshmen in average per frame (20.60), strike percentage (52.5), and Baker double percentage (59.1), while being No. 2 in fill percentage (86), first ball average (9.07), No. 3 in first ball of 9+ (74.9) and No. 5 in spare percentage (74.9).

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She also ranks inside the top 25 overall in strike percentage (18th), average per frame (22nd), fill percentage (24th), and average first ball (25th).

Trexler is coming off a first-place finish at the ISC Forth Worth Sectional, where she shot a 1,371 (228.5 avg.) to qualify for the single’s national championship. She finished fourth out of 687 bowlers in all four sectionals.

2024 CUSA Bowling Superlatives
CUSA Bowler of the Year – Rebecca Hagerman, Jax State
CUSA Coach of the Year – Shannon O’Keefe, Jax State
CUSA Newcomer of the Year – Crystal Elliott, Jax State
CUSA Freshman of the Year – Kylee Trexler, LA Tech

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (18)

Courtesy of LA Tech Athletic Communications

Louisiana Tech won its second straight match in shutout fashion, dominating rival ULM by a final score of 4-0 on a sunny Wednesday afternoon at Heard Stadium.

LA Tech (12-6) did not drop a single set in the match, picking up the doubles point while adding on singles wins on courts one, four, and six versus ULM (1-14).

“I was impressed with the way we handled business today,” said Tech head coach Amy Sargeant. “Winning a decisive doubles point set the tone going into singles, allowing us to play confident and committed tennis. We are always learning and looking for ways to improve ourselves and our game. Today’s match set the tone going into Saturday and Senior weekend.”

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The Bulldogs switched up a couple of their doubles pairings and it worked against the Warhawks. Alexia Romero and Zoie Epps teamed up for the first time and cruised to a 6-1 victory on court three. Valentina Vasquez and Tiffani Nash followed with a 6-3 win on court two to take the opening point.

LA Tech jumped all over ULM across all six singles lines, taking the first set on every court with three games being the most surrendered. Nash gave the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead, winning all 12 games against Tamara Bachmann in an overpowering 6-0, 6-0 victory at the No. 4 position.

Olga Bienzobas made it a 3-0 LA Tech lead, extending her winning streak to 16 matches by defeating Mariam Hatem 6-2, 6-1 at the No. 1 spot. The clincher came at the No. 6 position where Romero was too much for Raquel Alvaro, winning 6-0, 6-1 for her 50th career dual singles victory.

LA Tech will play a doubleheader as part of its final home games of the regular season. The Bulldogs will take on UAB at Noon and Grambling State at 4 p.m. at the LA Tech Tennis Complex.

The Senior Day ceremony, which will honor Olga Bienzobas, Tiffani Nash, and Valentina Vasquez, will take place in between matches.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (20)

By Kyle Roberts

Both of Ruston High’s basketball squads had players named to the Louisiana Sports Writers Association 5A All-State teams on Wednesday morning.

Both junior Aidan Anding and freshman Ahmad Hudson would be named first team all-state on the boys’ side, while senior Jaliyah McWain was named second team all-state for the girls. Senior Zaccheya Jackson earned honorable mention honors.

Anding, who was named the Lincoln Parish Journal player of the year, averaged 14.8 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.5 steals per contest. His efforts put him first-team All-District 2-5A, as well.

Hudson lived up to the preseason hype with multiple double-doubles throughout the year and thunderous dunks galore. His season saw an average 14.0 points and 11.0 rebounds a night.

Both Hudson and Anding joined the squad after winning the 2023 state championship with the Bearcat football team and will return to the Ruston hoops lineup next season.

McWain wrapped up her illustrious career for Ruston High after leading her team to a quarterfinal matchup loss in the playoffs to Denham Springs. She finished with 14.4 points, 6.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game.

Jackson was the Lady Bearcats’ second leading scorer at 11.9 points and 5.0 rebounds per night. Both young ladies averaged 3.0 steals a night, as well.

April 4, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (21)

Bobbie Joe “Bobcat” Pilgreen
July 15, 1951 – March 30, 2024
Visitation: Colvin Memorial Cemetery, Thursday, April 4, 2024,1:30 pm – 2:00 pm
Service: Colvin Memorial Cemetery, Thursday, April 4, 2024,2:00 pm
Cemetery: Colvin Memorial Cemetery, Thursday, April 4, 2024

Rae AmbroseHammons
October 13, 1943 – March 31, 2024
Visitation: Thursday, April 4, 2024, 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM, First Baptist Choudrant
Funeral Service: Friday, April 5, 2024, 2:00 PM, First Baptist Choudrant
Cemetery Committal: Friday, April 5, 2024, 3:00 PM, Pleasant Grove Cemetery, Choudrant

Timothy MarkSumrall
May 15, 1964 – March 27, 2024
Memorial Service: Saturday, May 4, 2024, 11:00 AM, Temple Baptist Church, 1515 South Service Road, Ruston

CharlesWessels
March 30, 1934 – March 23, 2024
Visitation: Saturday, April 6, 2024, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM, Grace United Methodist Church, 3401 North Trenton Street, Ruston
Funeral Service: Saturday, April 6, 2024, 11:00 AM, Grace United Methodist Church, 3401 North Trenton Street,Ruston
Cemetery Committal: Saturday, April 6, 2024,12:00 PM, Kilpatrick’s Memorial Gardens,1270 HWY 544,Ruston

April 3, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (22)

By Kyle Roberts

Both of Ruston High’s basketball squads had players named to the Louisiana Sports Writers Association 5A All-State teams on Wednesday morning.

Both junior Aidan Anding and freshman Ahmad Hudson would be named first team all-state on the boys’ side, while senior Jaliyah McWain was named second team all-state for the girls. Senior Zaccheya Jackson earned honorable mention honors.

Anding, who was named the Lincoln Parish Journal player of the year, averaged 14.8 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.5 steals per contest. His efforts put him first-team All-District 2-5A, as well.

Hudson lived up to the preseason hype with multiple double-doubles throughout the year and thunderous dunks galore. His season saw an average 14.0 points and 11.0 rebounds a night.

Both Hudson and Anding joined the squad after winning the 2023 state championship with the Bearcat football team and will return to the Ruston hoops lineup next season.

McWain wrapped up her illustrious career for Ruston High after leading her team to a quarterfinal matchup loss in the playoffs to Denham Springs. She finished with 14.4 points, 6.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game.

Jackson was the Lady Bearcats’ second leading scorer at 11.9 points and 5.0 rebounds per night. Both young ladies averaged 3.0 steals a night, as well.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (23)

By Malcolm Butler

Ruston mayor Ronny Walker said he expects the City of Ruston and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development to sign a memorandum of understanding next week that will clear the way for the start of the construction of Buc-ee’s.

This comes on the heels of a couple of meetings over the past 10 days that included officials from the city, the DOTD and Buc-ee’s as well as Neel-Schaffer, the engineering firm that has done the traffic studies around the future construction site around Tarbutton.

Walker said the meeting was to finalize the plans, outlining what is required to make Buc-ee’s a reality.

“The MOU basically says that the city will do A, B and C and if that is done, then everything is fine,” said Walker. “So this is basically the go-ahead. It’s basically the state saying, ‘We are going to allow you to do this, but you must do A, B and C. “

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Walker said part of those obligations include the roads that will service the footprint that will include Buc-ee’s and any additional businesses that follow it.

“It means that something that we have been working on now for two years, we can finally start turning some dirt,” said Walker. “The next question will be when will that start? That’s Buc-ee’s decision, but I know they are sitting on go.”

Walker also said that the City already has $5 million from the state, $6 million from the federal government, and during Monday night’s city council meeting, they approved $15 million set aside for whatever is needed within the project.

“We may not need but $2 million of that $15 million,” said Walker. “We won’t know until we have an idea of who is coming with Buc-ee’s. We asked for $15 million. In reality, if we spend $10 million I think that will be a lot.”

Walker said that next year the city of Ruston and Grambling officials would go to the legislature together to ask for additional funds to finish the road from the start of the Grambling city limits to the I-20 bridge in Grambling.

“If you modify anything on the interstate, you have to have an Interstate Modification Report,” said Walker. “That will be done over the next few weeks.”

So bottom line, when will Buc-ee’s be operational?

“I think we are right on schedule for opening in 2025,” said Walker.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (25)

By Kyle Roberts

Both Ruston city Mayor Ronny Walker and Lincoln Parish School Board President Gregg Phillips (District 8) responded to questions regarding whether the school board made any payments to the city for Ruston High School’s use of the tennis courts and softball field at the Ruston Parks and Recreation Sports Complex.

And both agreed that in the four years, no payments have been made.

“There is a lot of misinformation out there, and I want to give facts,” Walker said. “The city has received zero dollars from the school board for the last four years for tennis and softball, and we, the city, have received zero payments because there is not an agreement. Hopefully, there will be an agreement very soon. We made an offer to the school board, and I believe they will bring that up in May or June.

“But for people who are saying (the cost has) gone up — no, we haven’t gone up. In fact, we’ve offered less than what we started out with.”

Phillips answered the same question prior to a public forum Tuesday night at Ruston High that was held in regards to the April 27 vote on the $17.5 million bond proposal, and he echoed Walker on a possible timeline for a formal agreement to begin.

“The city has not received any funds from the parish school board for access to any of those facilities,” Phillips said. “For several years, there have been conversations between the city and the school board as to what, if anything, the LPSB should be paying to have access to softball and tennis. Within the next 30 to 45 days, an agreement should be finalized, and we’ll have it done.”

A portion of the bond proposal is slated to go to construction for Ruston High’s softball field, which is currently slated to be built on Bittersweet Avenue in Ruston, where the old softball field had been. Walker added that the city is willing to donate the old Ruston Girls’ Softball Association fields located across S. Farmerville Street near the Frosty Factory of America.

Phillips said the school board plans to take all options into consideration should the proposal pass, but the focus is on going back to Bittersweet. He also reiterated that use of funding from the bond proposal would not not contingent on the actual site of the future permanent home for Lady Bearcat Softball.

“It’s something we would need to take into consideration at the proper time, but right now our focus is on Bittersweet,” Phillips said.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (26)

Ruston police arrested a local woman early Friday morning after she was clocked on radar traveling 71 miles per hour in a 35 mph zone.

Caitlin Riser Schmidt., 31, of Ruston was clocked on radar on Cooktown Road about 11:45 p.m. Thursday night. The vehicle stopped in the driveway of a residence on West Kentucky Avenue. Schmidt never gave a reason she was going so fast.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (27)

A records check showed Schmidt was driving under suspension and had three active arrest warrants. She was arrested and booked at the Lincoln Parish Detention Center for speeding, driving under suspension, Ruston Police warrants for theft and expired driver’s license, and a warrant from the Lincoln Parish Sheriff’s Office for issuing worthless checks.

Schmidt’s bail was set at $24,500.

This information has been provided by a law enforcement agency as public information. Persons named or shown in photographs or video as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not been convicted of any criminal offense and are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (28)

By Kyle Roberts

The Lincoln Parish School Board held its second public forum to give Ruston’s school district residents a chance to hear updates regarding the upcoming $17.5 million bond proposal.

After a brief introduction by LPSB president Gregg Phillips, Ruston High School principal Dan Gressett talked at length about a proposed roof replacement for Ruston High that is estimated to be $1 million.

“The warranty on our roof goes out this year,” Gressett said. “It’s not in great shape at all, and we battled and battled as long as we can. It’s something that needs to be done.”

Gressett then discussed the need for increased security at Ruston High’s campus.

“Ruston High is the only school in the district where you are not buzzed in and come into a waiting area,” Gressett said. “When you walk in the doors at RHS, you’re in the middle of the school. You walk right into students. We have some money that I believe is going to cover that, but we want to secure our doors.”

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (29)

A second part of security in the proposal is the Evolv body scanner machines that can be set up in entrances at the school but are designed to be portable, meaning they can be used to scan entrants at events outside of the school building.”

“The first time I encountered the body scan machines was at the quarterfinal game at Zachary High School (in March),” Gressett said. “They had it set up as you entered the gym. There were probably a thousand people at the game, and there was no stop in traffic. You walked straight through, and if you were “pinged,” you would be pulled aside and searched a little further. It was a very smooth process.”

In the proposal are five Evolv systems, three for Ruston High and two for Ruston Junior High for an estimated cost of $500,000 for all five.

Gressett also gave an update on the parking lot by the gym entrance, which is estimated to be currently two-thirds filled with dirt, slated to add more parking for students during school hours and for attendees at sporting events.

Ruston head football coach Jerrod Baugh then gave more insight on why the bond measure should not be seen as solely going to athletics and not the academic success of students.

“I don’t think you separate the two,” Baugh said. “Anyone that has been involved in athletics in the past or has kids or grandkids that are involved in athletics or extracurricular activities would agree that it has a lot to do with how they progress academically, as well. The experience that I have, which is over 25 years of doing this, has shown me that it’s absolutely intertwined and you can’t separate the two.”

Ruston School District No. 1 residents will vote on the proposal on Saturday, April 27, 2024.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (30)

By T. Scott Boatright

Ruston is officially planning to unplug itself from itsfiber optic network following a City Council during Monday night’s monthly meeting.

The City Council unanimously passed a resolution authorizing the sale of its fiber optic network, which has been in place since 2010.

Ruston built the fiber optic network and the city has provided internet service to approximately 300 business customers.

Potential buyers have until April 25 to make an offer on the network. During a City Council meeting in March, Mayor Ronny Walker said that more than 10 companies are interested in buying the city’s underground and fiber optic network.

“The city will accept proposals (from companies that want to buy the network), evaluate them and select the proposal that meets the best interest of and provides the best value to the city,” said City Attorney Bill Carter.

Walker said changes in internet availability are a big factor behind the decision to sell the network.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (31)

“Six years ago we did a study and thought about getting into the private/home internet service,” Walker said. “We were moving along that track and then four years ago, when the federal government starting putting so much money into broadband across the United States — billions of dollars to the state of Louisiana — that’s when we decided as a staff it was time to exit that business because there were so many other large companies doing that.

“So that’s where we are today.”

Carter said that what customers the existing network will provide service to — homes, commercial businesses, or both — will be determined by what proposal ends up being selected by the city.

“The proposal will determine that,” Carter said. “We have sent out certain criteria and questions. One asks if the criteria is the company letting the city know what they’re criteria would be for providing service to homes.

“So we can’t control what the plan would be, but that is a criteria that will be heavily weighted in our decision and we’ll just have to wait and see. But we do feel that some of the proposals would include providing additional services to homes. That’s what we think, but we will not know until we see the proposals.”

Walker stressed that the city will be looking out for homeowners in deciding on a proposal.

“That’s one of the seasons we wanted to expand our service —,we need more competition in our city,” Walker said.

Ruston’s City Council unanimously voted 5-0 to authorize the city to begin accepting proposals and sell its fiber optic network.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (32)

Ruston Police arrested a local woman early Saturday morning after repeated calls to a loud party on Alpine Avenue.

Police responded to a large block party where they remained on the scene for about two hours attempting to clear the area. At about 3 a.m., a caller reported the party was still underway. Officers returned and found a sound system which could easily be heard from a distance greater than 30 feet in violation of Ruston city ordinances.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (33)

Laquittia L. Lynn, 40, identified the sound system as hers and used her phone to turn the music off. When she refused to sign a citation for disturbing the peace, she was placed under arrest and booked at the Lincoln Parish Detention Center.

This information has been provided by a law enforcement agency as public information. Persons named or shown in photographs or video as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not been convicted of any criminal offense and are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (34)

By Malcolm Butler

Although they are six years apart in classification, Olivia Underwood and Ava Lantrip both played liked veterans in Cedar Creek’s 12-6 win over Many Tuesday night.

Underwood, the senior outfielder for the Lady Cougars, went 3-for-4 at the plate, including her first career home run — a three-run first inning blast that gave Creek the early 4-0 lead.

Lantrip, just a seventh grader for the Lady Cougars, was 4-of-5 at the plate and also picked up the win in the circle in relief, tossing the final 3.1 innings while allowing just two runs — one earned — on three hits while striking out two.

After struggling to get early leads the last few weeks, the Cougars (11-14) were able to gain the advantage and the momentum early. Lantrip and Anna Claire Fitzgerald recorded back-to-back singles and then Bailey Adams drove home the first run with an RBI single to right field.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (35)

Underwood then followed by lifting a pitch deep over the centerfield wall for the 4-0 lead.

“I talked to them about last game and about playing for seven innings and competing for seven innings even if we were down,” said Cedar Creek head coach Julie Riser. “They did that. We came back in our last game down 7-0 and scored six runs in the seventh inning so my challenge today was to try to gain the momentum early.

“Let’s be honest. Most teams play better with the lead. We are so young it helps our nerves and jitters. They responded well and really built off what we did last game. It was good to see.”

Underwood, who almost hit her second career home run in her next at bat when she hit a double off the top of the left field fence, said she was seeing the ball well.

“(The Many pitcher) kept it outside most of the game, and she was changing up her speed a lot,” said Underwood of the at bat. “I went to a 3-2 count on her and was just able to send it over the fence. I just kept battling.”

Junior Mallory Smith got the start in the circle and cruised until there were two outs in the top of the fourth inning. That’s when Many (12-11) recorded four straight hits, including three extra base knocks, to chase Smith from the game. Lantrip came on in relief and promptly surrendered back-to-back hits as the Tigers plated five runs with two outs to take a 5-4 advantage.

“Mallory really wasn’t struggling with command, they just started hitting her,” said Riser. “I think her pitches may have been up just a little bit and they were seeing it and sitting on that change up, which we had gotten them on early in the game.

“It’s been our thing all year as far as just mixing up pitching. Just trying to give other teams different looks. When I pull them it’s not always that they are doing badly, it’s more just giving the other team a different look.”

The game remained 5-4 until the bottom of the fifth inning when the Cougars erupted for six runs on five hits and two costly outfield errors by the Tigers. Ainsley Dement, Cadence Spangler and Lantrip each registered RBI singles while Smith recorded a sacrifice fly.

“Our bats finally got hot last game,” said Riser. “We went through a two or three game lull where we were hitting it right at people and we just couldn’t get anything going. We finally pulled it out and really hit the ball well. I was glad of that.”

“Coach really emphasized coming into this game was to start early, playing all seven innings and win every inning,” said Underwood.

After surrendering hits to three of the first four batters that she faced, Lantrip didn’t allow a hit after a leadoff single in the top of the fifth inning.

Creek added a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth inning on an RBI double by Spangler down the left field line and an RBI single up the middle by Smith.

Lantrip was able to pitch around three infield errors by the Cougars in the top of the seventh when the Tigers added an unearned run. However, a game-ending double play sealed the victory for Cedar Creek.

In addition to Underwood and Lantrip’s big day at the plate, Fitzgerald was 2-for-5, DeMent 2-for-4, and Spangler 2-for-4 to lead the Lady Cougars 17-hit attack.

April 3, 2024April 3, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (36)

Doesn’t seem that long ago but in 2018, one of best guys we know gave another one of the best guys we know a gift certificate to Superior’s Steakhouse, and he used the card to treat the Shreveport-Bossier Journalstaff to lunch with local sports icons Bobby Aillet and Leo Sanford.

We are easily led. Especially when free food is involved. And lunch with heroes.

In a comfy “meeting” room, we sat there for nearly three hours and overate and listened to these two Louisiana Tech Athletics Hall of Famers and, at the time, besties for 70 of their nearly 90 years as bona fide dudes.

There are worse ways to spend time and money.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (37)

When Mr. Bobby died three years ago this week, age 93, it was J.J. Marshall who recalled that day and said to me, “I could have sat there and listened to them talk all afternoon.”

We just about did.

And now Mr. Leo has passed this early spring at 94, two of the final members of The National Association for the Advancement of Grandstand Quarterbacks (NAAGQ), an exclusive “club” for more than 70 years, formed by Tech football teens going off to war in 1943, a group whose families grew up together and, through the years, grew old together.

They weren’t stingy about sharing stories — if they were asked. No chest-beating in this bunch. Thankfully, they shared enough of themselves that we’ll always have stuff to carry around.

Leo was a member of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, the Ark-La-Tex Museum of Champions, a star at Shreveport’s Fair Park High, a Pro Bowler in the NFL, a league champ in 1958 with Johnny Unitas and the Baltimore Colts, a humble bear of a man with oven-mitt-sized paws who, after this playing days, sold class rings and letter jackets to students all over the area; he sold that stuff but the smiles and understated jokes, he did those for free.

He loved to tell about him and another Tech recruit being driven from Shreveport to Ruston by legendary Tech football assistant Jimmy Mize, and Coach Mize asking Leo’s friend what he wanted to major in, and the kid said, “Engineering,” so then Coach Mize asked Leo the same thing, and Leo said he was thinking that if his buddy could learn to drive a train, so could he, so Leo said, “Engineering.”

Another one’s about Coach Joe Aillet with Leo and some other linemen in a crescent moon around Aillet and the coach hollers “I need a dummy!” and nothing happens for like five second so Leo jumped out toward coach and Aillet said, “Not you, Sanford. I need a BLOCKING dummy.” (Leo would tell the story and shrug his shoulders: “Hesaidhe needed a dummy so …”)

When Sanford established the largest endowed scholarship in Tech Athletics history in honor of his wife Myrna after her passing in 2018, Leo told his buddies at their Friday morning unofficial club meeting at Shreveport’s Southfield Grill that “I’d be happy to have given thesecond-largest endowed scholarship if one of you other guys would step up.”

It was an almost ordained sort of special, the times Leo and Bobby and their football friends and families got to share. Disheartening to think it’s over, but then again, these were times built on love, and love never dies. No good thing ever does.

Speaking of love, this is from Myrna’s obit:“On their first real date he told her he was going to marry her, and she told him he was crazy. While she spent the next 68 years admitting he was right, she’d also tell you he was still crazy.”

Curt Joiner, one of Leo’s sons-in-law, will tell you it’s always been a “good” kind of crazy. “I don’t know if there’s any guy in the world I enjoy spending an evening with morethan my father-in-law,” Joiner said.

A lot of guys share that feeling.

Contact Teddy atteddy@latech.edu

April 3, 2024April 2, 2024 / kylelpj

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (38)

Today’s bass boats are nothing short of incredible and expensive! The accessories you can add to a bass boat are really cool and can make a huge difference in your ability to fish effectively. But which of these inventions has truly had the greatest impact on the sport of bass fishing? Today, we’ll do a walk-thru from the front to the back of the boat and go over each of these features and their importance.

When you buy a bass boat today, it’s very similar to buying a new truck or car. There are all kinds of accessories that you can select to make your boat even better. There are some you might consider a luxury item while others are a necessity if you want to compete.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (39)

Let’s first look at the very front of the boat and talk about the trolling motor. Nothing, in my opinion, has had a greater impact on the sport of bass fishing than the trolling motor. In 1934, O.G Schmidt invented the first electric trolling motor in Fargo, North Dakota. This invention revolutionized bass fishing by allowing ananglerto navigate a body of water with ease without having to run the big engine. This device is used not as the primary means to propel the boat but makes navigation much easier especially in shallow water. From its inception, the trolling motor has served one purpose….to move the boat around quietly without spooking fish and is a standard feature on today’s bass boats.

Today, these high-tech trolling motors can lock a boat down on one spot in open water. It will literally hold the boat in one position automatically with the push of a button, allowing theanglerto fish an area or a spot more effectively. The days of using an anchor to hold a boat in place are gone with today’s new trolling motor technology.

Also located on the front deck of the boat are high-tech electronic fish locators. These units have made bass fishing so much easier, not just for professionalanglers, but the noviceangleras well. They allowanglersto see fish as far away as 100 feet on a screen the size of a small TV. They give great detail about the structure and contours of the lake bottom. They show water temperature, depth, GPS coordinates, timber, and grass and will tell you the composition of the bottom as to whether it’s hard or soft.

Why is this important? Hard spots are where bass like to set up, especially during the spawn. Today’s sonars show debris from lay down logs and rocks to brush piles along with clouds of baitfish. The detail is so good that an experiencedanglercan tell if the fish he’s looking at are bass, white perch, or catfish.

Moving further to the back of the boat, let’s look at the dashboard. Today’s top of the line bass boats are mostly digital. Your gauges, including the speedometer, RPM, and temperature gauges, are all digital. Some have gauges that monitor the gas, oil, and battery levels, while some boats have a water temperature gauge for the livewells, ensuring that you can maintain a good temperature level for your fish in order to keep fish alive for weigh-in.

Another advancement, that might be the best safety feature ever invented for a bass boat, is the hot foot. The hot foot is a gas pedal that allows theanglerto drive the boat just like a car or truck, with both hands on the steering wheel. It also allows for better boat control when navigating rough water conditions.

There’s also another feature that has become one of the best accessories you can put on a boat…. a shallow water anchor system called Power Poles or Talons. Power poles are made by a company called Power Pole while the Talons are made by Minn Kota. Power Poles fold out from the back of the boat while Talons are mounted on the back of the boat and descend straight down. Both are really good: it’s like comparing Ford or Chevrolet; which one do you like the best?

Both are great tools and will do exactly what they are designed to do, anchor you down in one spot. The only drawback to these units is that they are only designed for shallow water of 12 feet or less. When they first came out, I was a skeptic and thought it was a waste of money until I added one to my boat and realized how useful it was to have these on your boat. They come in handy when you’re having to sit down and retie or cull fish. They also come in handy when you are launching your boat or docking up for a weigh-in.

As you can see, bass boats have come a long way since the days of stick- steering banana style boats. The features you can add are nothing short of incredible, but they do come with a cost. Major boat brands like Ranger, Skeeter, Caymas and Triton all have boats that fall into the $90,000 plus range.

To compare how far the price has jumped in the last 23 years dating back to the early 2000’s, a fully loaded bass boat back then cost around $30,000. But today, some boats are hitting the crazy $100,000 mark! Why? The cost of building materials and the high level of accessories it takes to build a bass boat today have increased.

So, if you’re in the market for a new bass boat, prepare yourself for sticker shock as companies continue to improve and upgrade these high-tech water rockets that can reach speeds of 80 MPH.

Till next time, good luck, good fishing and make sure to check out Tackle Talk Live podcast, as well as the Hook’N Up & Track’N Down Show on You Tube.

April 2024 – Page 15 – Lincoln Parish Journal (2024)

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