North Murray High School Mountaineers

June 7, 2013

Aligning the stars

Gann relishes coaching standouts

David Gann worked many high school football games as an assistant before finally experiencing one as the head coach last August.

And after three consecutive years as an assistant in The Stump on Sports Tennessee-Georgia All-Star Football Classic, the North Murray coach has moved up to the top job for the showcase of recent high school graduates from southeastern Tenn-essee and northwestern Georgia.

Gann will lead Team Georgia into the 10th annual Classic at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Spears Stadium on the campus of McCallie School in Chattanooga. Tennessee won 7-3 last season at Ringgold High School’s Don Patterson Stadium and holds a 6-3 series lead.

Gann had most recently been an assistant at Ringgold before getting the job at North Murray a year ago. He led the Mountaineers to a 5-5 record in 2012, the best in program history, after the team went 1-19 over its first two varsity seasons in 2010 and 2011.

Gann coached in this all-star contest as an assistant in 2010, 2011 and 2012. The first and last were with Ringgold head coach Robert Akins, his former boss, as Georgia’s head coach. The middle year — when the Peach State won 31-21 — was for Dade County’s Bradley Warren.

“It’s a great experience,” Gann said Thursday during practice at Don Patterson Stadium. “One of the hardest things to do is try and round up the kids. Once they graduate, they scatter. We’ve been fortunate enough to round up the crew we’ve been able to.”

North Murray has four players on Georgia’s roster: safety Tino Hernandez, offensive lineman Wes-ley Ross, defensive lineman Isaiah Jackson and kicker Izzy Hernandez. Southeast Whitfield has three. Former Raiders offensive lineman Jared Davis, running back/linebacker Easton Ridley and wide receiver/defensive back Kevin Torres are on the team. Northwest Whitfield linebacker Jarrod Farmer is also on the roster.

Dalton wide receiver Brandon Painter was a late addition for the Peach State, practicing for the first time on Thursday.

The Catamounts also had two other players invited — wide receiver Brandon Dale and defensive end Laighton Reese — but both had conflicts, Gann said.

North Murray’s Hernandez said having three former teammates as well as his former head coach makes it easier to prepare for Saturday.

“It makes me feel more comfortable with the team,” he said. “It makes me feel like I have my old team and we’re just joining with a new team.”

Local coaches helping Gann are North Murray’s Courtney Braswell, Don Murray, Ryan Otting and Jason Poteet; and Southeast’s Allen Jackson and Todd Murray. Gann said they have been important assets.

“Luckily, we have a good group of assistants that are able to take care of a lot of things,” Gann said.

Gann, a former all-state offensive lineman at Ringgold, spent five years as an offensive coordinator for the Tigers under Akins. He also had assistant coaching stints at Southeast, for five seasons before that, and at Northwest from 1996-2001.

Since becoming North Murray’s head coach, it seems his head coaching gigs have become abundant. He also led the North Georgia All-Stars in the D.L. Scott Coalition Bowl last December at the Georgia Dome.

“Now it’s kind of like I should be careful what I wish for,” Gann said. “The toughest part is trying to organize it and set it up and make sure the players cane make it out. Some of these kids live so far away. That’s kind of the difficult part about it.”

Boyd-Buchanan head coach Grant Reynolds will coach Tennessee’s team. Reynolds also was an assistant for Akins, who coached at Chattanooga’s Boyd-Buchanan High School for 10 seasons before going to Ringgold. Reynolds also was Akins’ assistant for the all-star series’ second game.

“Those two guys were great assistants, Grant on the defensive side and David on the offensive side,” Akins said.

“... It’s really gratifying to see those guys coaching in all-star games and really growing.”

Reynolds coached Tennessee’s all-stars in 2010 and won 17-0. If he wins, he’ll be the first coach to win twice in two tries.

In addition to the football game, the Tennessee-Georgia All-Star Classic series features games for girls and boys basketball (6 and 8 p.m. on Tuesday at Notre Dame High School in Chattanooga); girls and boys soccer (1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on June 15 at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga); baseball (6 p.m. on June 17 at Ridgeland High School in Rossville); and softball (6 p.m. on June 19 at Frost Stadium in Chattanooga).

1
Text Only
North Murray High School Mountaineers
  • DHS at SE soccer 7 mlh.jpg Prep Roundup: Unbeaten streak rolls on for Cats

    Replicating the start of last year’s Class 4A state title match, Dalton High School’s boys soccer team needed just four minutes to score its first goal at Southeast Whitfield on Friday.
    The Catamounts scored five more — and again defended their crown of dominance in the sport.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Baseball Roundup: Raiders out of hunt for the playoffs

    Needing a win to keep Southeast Whitfield High School’s baseball season meaningful, Raiders coach Brad Lofton turned to a pair of senior pitchers on Friday at Heritage-Catoosa.
    The seniors didn’t disappoint, but it was the offense and the defense that couldn’t come through.

    April 12, 2014

  • Prep Roundup: Bruins power past Cats for key victory at home

    TUNNEL HILL — Similar to Wednesday’s Sub-region 7B-4A baseball series opener at Dalton High School, Northwest Whitfield fell behind early Thursday versus the Catamounts.

    April 11, 2014

  • Prep Roundup: Dalton golf teams in form at Fields Ferry

    Even in wet and muddy conditions, both the Dalton High School boys and girls golf teams are sharpening their games at the right time.
    With the Region 7-4A tournament scheduled in two weeks, both the Catamounts and the Lady Cats finished second during play at the Fields Ferry Invitational in Calhoun on Monday. Despite the soggy conditions, Dalton’s Jacob Brown tied for medalist honors with a 2-over par 74 to lead the Cats to a 313 combined score in the six-play, four-score format. Dalton finished three strokes behind tournament winner LaFayette.

    April 8, 2014

  • Wrestler of the year 2014 2 mlh.jpg All-Area Wrestling Team and Wrestler of the Year: Winning another title was the only goal for Wheeler

    When Dalton High School wrestler Sidney Wheeler won a state title for the first time two years ago as a sophomore, he admitted he became a little complacent about what it would take to replicate the feat — perhaps not noticeably so to most observers, but enough to take success for granted. Wheeler believed it a matter of course that he would win state again, and he thought the second title would simply be the middle child in a high school three-peat.

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup: N. Murray’s offense shut down by Canes

    North Murray High School’s baseball team may not be among the group tied for first place in Region 5-3A, but the Mountain-eers are sitting fairly comfortably in fourth place.
    If the regular season ended today, that would still put North Murray in the state playoffs for the first time.

    April 4, 2014

  • Prep softball: N. Murray’s Silvers heads to Covenant

    In just about every part of the recruiting process, Covenant College did a little extra to show its interest in Sarah Silvers.
    It spoke volumes to the North Murray High School softball player.

    April 1, 2014

  • Prep soccer: Morris boys earn Class 2A ranking

    It’s nothing new for a local high school boys soccer team to be among those in the eurosportscoreboard.com state rankings.
    It is new for that team to be Morris Innovative.

    March 18, 2014

  • Prep roundup: SE offense keeps foot on throttle

    As long as Southeast Whitfield High School’s baseball team continues to hit the ball and score runs the way it has so far this season, it really won’t matter what the defense does.
    Coach Brad Lofton still likes how the Raiders’ fielding is improving.

    March 11, 2014

  • NM at DHS baseball   1  mlh.jpg Prep Roundup: A little bit of momentum

    Neither Dalton High School baseball coach Shane Ramsey nor North Murray coach David Redmond has had much reason to complain about their offensive production this season.
    Defense is another matter.

    March 7, 2014 1 Photo