Conquerors History, A Story
The ‘His’story of the Conquerors began in 1999 when I was still coaching at UNT. My assistant Judy Fox and I were riding in a van with the team when the discussion of our college players involvement with a club in Southlake began. They had just held a tryout, back in the days when very few kids actually ‘made’ club teams and cuts were rampant. I recall asking “what happens to those who don’t make it?” And the player response was “who cares?” I fell silent, and felt a strong conviction screaming inside of me….I DO!!
You see, in 15 years of coaching collegiately, I always found my greatest pleasure in helping kids reach their potential who were just under the radar, not the prima donnas. The second best, if you will, that were always overlooked, under supported, and often questioned on their level of talent by coaches. The ones who just needed SOMEONE to see value in them, to tap into the hunger that the top ones never seemed to have. My collegiate recruiting efforts were rife with finding those hidden gems, the diamonds. I admire work ethic and humility more than anything in an athlete, and to choose those that nobody ‘wanted’ seemed just up my alley!
SO, we began our club at Lake Dallas HS in the fall of ’99 with tryouts from our college camp list with our goal of operating in the freedom of being a Christian club! In that first year the majority of our players were Liberty Christian kids and several went on to play in college from just two teams.
The following year we moved to Carrollton and to our astonishment, the tryout line circled the building! We were overwhelmed to say the least and ended up keeping 9 teams, while having to let many go bc we had no staff to coach them! It was crazy and they came from everywhere in the metroplex. Judy and I quickly knew we HAD to hire others at this point! Sweet Paige Krause was one of those young 12 year olds that walked thru our doors in 2000, and as fate would have it, she has been a part of my life ever since!! She was the hardest working kid I know, and could jump completely out of the gym! Her loyalty to me, the Conquerors and all those in her life, is just remarkable and rare in this day and age! She played her entire scholastic career with us. After completing her college degree she immediately came on staff and has been here ever since! People at tournaments often say to me, “Hey, we saw your daughter coaching last week!” and I never, EVER correct them! I would be absolutely honored to have a child like her!
Judy branched out to begin another Christian club in Carrollton, while I made the move back to Argyle with the Conquerors. It seemed the majority of our players were from the Flower Mound/Denton area so I reconnected and moved into Liberty Christian’s facilities. We expanded to a usual 7-10 teams going often to train at various schools and subsequent years settling in at Argyle HS for 13 of those years. We moved thru Lake Dallas HS, American Heritage Academy, Liberty Christian, McKamy MS, Selwyn, Aubrey, Argyle, and Denton Calvary. Over these 22 years of being the Conquerors, many administrators have gone out of their way to help us time and again!
Ragan Salinas came into my life in 2008 as a 15 year old playing for us. She was a very diligent player, always striving to listen and do EXACTLY what the coaches wanted. Conscientious, is the best word to describe her as a HS girl. I truly had no idea the depth of our friendship and growth in Christ that would follow as we embarked on the coaching journey together in 2011. I trust her in every possible way! She is loyal, dependable, honest, forthright, committed to a life of living by the Spirit of God, a prayer warrior, and very simply just a great friend!
Ruthie Forson is her younger sister and came on board in 2014 as an energetic, somewhat over-active 12 year old who could NOT sit still!! I am quite certain I terrified her at a young age, but I trust she has forgiven me, and has personally shown me what is really means to be a leader! I have watched her grow into one of the most inspiring young women I have EVER coached, and with 42 years behind me and thousands of players, that’s saying a LOT! God continues to use her mightily on her college team and she has set an example to many on how to really, really commit to training! God opened a door for her to play on scholarship at SE Oklahoma, the old-fashioned and biblical way….a college coach just walks by and sees a girl playing her heart out at Lonestar, and knows she wants her! Proverbs 3: 3-4 exemplify her character, “Let not kindness and truth forsake thee, bind them about thy neck, write them upon the tablet of thy heart. So then though shalt find favor and good understanding in the sight of God and man!” Ruthie is truly one of the kindest players I know, who has no fear in speaking and standing for truth in all things. So THEN, favor finds her with God and man.
We are moving into a new phase in 2021, by adding ‘MORE THAN’ to our name! We have seen thru the past year and a half that times are requiring a strong stand for what we believe, as many are falling for just any word that is spoken, and not testing it against the word of God, or prayerfully seeking his knowledge in all things. His word promises that we are ‘MORE THAN Conquerors thru Him’ and we are desiring to walk that our in all our lives no matter how crazy or upside down things turn in this natural world. We want to be the light (so darkness flees), and the salt (that flavors, and preserves so death cannot overtake us). I am anxious to experience the true revelation of what all that means in the coming year.
I am so honored to share my life, my club, my heart, and whatever wisdom and knowledge I carry, with all those that God brings our way this new season!