After wrapping up their second consecutive District 27-2A championship last year, the Brazos Cougarettes will have a new district to compete against in 2020.
The biennial realignment of the University Interscholastic League brought Brazos back up to Class 3A with an enrollment between 230 and 349 and reignites a neighborly rivalry with East Bernard. Among the teams also fighting for the District 24 crown for the next two years will be Boling, Danbury, Harmony School of Discovery, Hempstead, Hitchcock and Van Vleck.
Once the regular season standings determine who goes to the playoffs, the Cougarettes, if postseason eligible, will be vying to extend a bi-district winning streak to nine years in a row after going three rounds deep last year.
Brazos took down the Kenedy Lions, fourth-place finishers from District 28, and the Granger Lions, the third seed from District 25, in straight sets to set up a regional quarterfinal matchup with the Thrall Tigers who finished second in District 25. Although the Cougarettes fell 3-1, Thrall came just shy of clinching a state tournament bid by falling to Burton 3-1 in the regional finals.
Brazos secured its district championship by losing only two games in district play. The Cougarettes won their first two games, lost a 3-1 match to Shiner, then won two more games before dropping a 3-0 contest with Weimar. After that, however, Brazos won its final six district games in a row to finish atop the district standings.
Last year’s roster featured five freshmen, sophomores and juniors each and did not include any seniors which means head coach Denyse Fernandez returns plenty of players who earned valuable experience in 2019.
This year’s crop of sophomores includes Raelynn Krueger, Taylor Brzozowski, Haiven Harris, May Mendez and Jemma Zahradnik. Rising juniors are Meagan Demny, Laura Durrett, Veronica Romero, Caitlyn Snedaker and Sierra Kovar. Athletes playing in their final season for the Cougarettes are Sofia Solis, Halie Gonzalez, Karlie Mare, Presley Reyes and Jessica Buford.