Galveston ISD hires new Ball High Tors girls basketball coaches for 2012-2013 season
Coaches include Texas High School Sports Hall of Fame player in former Texas A&M star Sonny Benefield Jr. and Jessica Gaines, a Stephen F. Austin four-year letterman
GALVESTON, Texas – Galveston ISD announced the hiring of Fendley “Sonny” Benefield, Jr. as head girls basketball coach and Jessica Gaines as assistant girls basketball coach at Ball High. The two coaches were voted unanimously during Wednesday’s Board of Trustees meeting to lead an up-and-coming girls team. The coaches will begin their duties with the district later this summer.
“I’m really excited about it because I had coached in Santa Fe before and I have kept up with the program,” said Coach Benefield from his Port Lavaca home. “When the opportunity arose to get back to Galveston with the amount of talent they have, I jumped at it. I really think the Ball High girls team is a diamond in the rough.”
Coach Benefield has had a prosperous career as a player and coach. He was a Texas High School Basketball Hall of Fame inductee (1999) and an All-American for his time at Sweeny High School, where he scored nearly 35 points a game. He received a scholarship to play basketball and baseball for Texas A&M University at College Station where he starred as the point guard on a Shelby Metcalfe-coached Southwest Conference Championship team that went to the Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA tournament in his sophomore year.
Post-university, Coach Benefield has been on the sidelines for nearly 42 years in boys and girls basketball at the high school and college level, including a stint at Santa Fe from 1991-1995 where one of his favorite memories is taking the girls team to the state regional quarter-finals during the 1993-1994 season and beating a then-stacked Lamar Consolidated team. He currently is the head basketball coach and economics teacher at Calhoun High School.
Coach Gaines comes to GISD from Rockdale ISD where she coaches the girls basketball High in Rockdale, TX. She is a Stephen F. Austin State University graduate, a four-year letterman on the girls basketball team and played in the NCAA tournament in 2006. She is also a three-time member of the Southland Conference Commissioners Honor Roll and has been in education for the past two years as a teacher and coach.