GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KREX) — Tuesday night School District 51 honored the SWL Girls Basketball Player Of The Year, Kylie Wells and Coach Of The Year Michael Wells. It also recognized the WSL Boys Basketball Player Of The Year Donovan Maestas and Coach Of The Year Corey Hitchcock.
ALL IN THE FAMILY: For the Fruita father/daughter duo of Kylie and Michael Wells helped lead the Wildcats to 3 straight Southwestern League Titles. The tandem agreed it’s not always easy to be coached or play for a loved one but for the two they say they wouldn’t change the experience for the world. For Coach Wells the honor came on the same day as his announcement he would be stepping down as the Wildcats head coach. “After taking some time off, I just didn’t feel like I was in a place where I was able to give everything I could… I’ve been Coach and Dad at the same time, and I have a son that’s going to be a freshman, and I thought this would be a good time to be just dad for a change.” As for Kylie, She’ll be sticking around the valley too. She’s CMU-bound where she’ll play soccer for the Mavericks.
BULLDOGS RISING: Palisade scored a 1-2 honor as well for Western Slope League Player/ Coach Of The Year. The first-year head coach and senior guard helped the Bulldogs earn a WSL leading 10-2 league record. A mark that saw Palisade jump from third last year to atop the league food chain. The post-celebration interview was almost a battle of dueling compliments. Both crediting each other and a hardworking team for the honors. “Grateful. To get a coach like this my senior year, he pushed me every single day. I wouldn’t be here without him.” Meastas said. As for Coach: “I’m just a happy coach. Proud of Donovan, all the stuff he accomplished. Just to trust and believe in me to push him and get him to where he wanted to be what a great experience I had in getting to coach him this year.”