McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Local Sports

September 26, 2013

Ariana Garner tightly bound to Lady Buffs

McALESTER — Many McAlester Lady Buffaloes talk about the tight bonds within their softball team. But with the Lady Buffs, those bonds often last beyond the final game of the fall, as many of those same softball players go on to play for McAlester’s basketball team in the winter.

Along with several underclassmen, the list of McAlester softball-basketball players includes juniors Vhitney Garner and April Calistro and seniors Baylee Dawkins, Stacey Washington and Ariana Garner, Vhitney’s older sister.

“We hang out together as a team all the time,” Ariana said Tuesday. “We have bonfires and stuff and try to relax as much as we can.”

Ariana and Vhitney started playing softball at a young age. Ariana said her father, Steve Garner, would frequently take his two daughters outside to practice.

“He always wanted us to play sports because he never did in high school,” Ariana said.

“When we were little, we liked it, because we felt like we were getting a lot of attention from our parents.”

Both Steve and his wife Blanca  still come to watch their kids play, Ariana said. Ariana started playing competitive softball with the Boys & Girls Club, then joined the junior high team at Puterbaugh.

She made McAlester’s varsity as a sophomore. The Lady Buffs reached the state semifinals that year.

“I was kind of nervous,” Ariana said of her first season. “It was when Rayna (Smith) and Rachel (Bernhardt) and all of them were seniors, so it was scary.”

Both Garners made the varsity that year, and they’ve played together every year since. Vhitney’s a junior and Ariana’s a senior, and Ariana said few of their teammates know the Garners’ styles the way they know each other.

“People don’t think it is, but it’s a lot of fun,” Ariana said. “Vhitney, when I’m batting, she can tell me how I swung wrong, and I can tell her. It’s the same way in basketball.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local Sports
  • Chance Sistrunk Buffs sweep Burn Out Tournament

    McAlester won four divisions and placed in the top four in the other four in their annual Burn Out Tournament, powering the Buffaloes and Lady Buffaloes to twin tournament championships Friday at the Bob Brumley Gymnasium and Chadick Park tennis courts.

    April 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • Casey Jones Clark Bass Invitational track meet results

    Results from Thursday's Clark Bass Invitational track meet at Hook Eales Stadium in McAlester.

    April 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • Meadows' walk-off leads Buffs

    McAlester starting pitcher Mason Ross struck out 14 in a complete seven-inning outing, and Chad Meadows' fielder's choice scored Zach Baugh in the bottom of the seventh to give the Buffaloes a 5-4 walk-off win against the Pryor Tigers on Thursday at Mike Deak Field in McAlester.

    April 17, 2014

  • Katelynn Allen and Big C.A.T.S. Kiowa gymnast wins in Ada

    Kiowa student and Big C.A.T.S. gymnast Katelynn Allen placed first on the balance beam and floor and second on the uneven bars and vault during Saturday’s “I Am 3rd” meet at Champion Athletics in Ada.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Megan Odle Midweek Update: Baseball season winding down

    Catching up on the last nine days of local sports.

    April 17, 2014 5 Photos

  • First Bird First Turkey

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Local Gymnastics Local Gymnastics

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Eduardo Suarez 1 Eduardo Suarez makes history

    McAlester senior Eduardo Suarez didn't start playing soccer until the summer before his junior year, but he's one of the first two-year boys' varsity soccer player in school history.

    April 14, 2014 2 Photos

  • Parker Tidwell 1 Parker Tidwell seeing double

    McAlester senior Parker Tidwell had played singles tennis at Puterbaugh Middle School, but switching to doubles in high school has led to three trips to state tournaments and three years on McAlester's varsity team.

    April 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bryce Tucker Demons blow out Cougars

    Crowder’s unstoppable offense produced 11 hits, drew seven walks and took six more bases on hit-by-pitches and Canadian errors, run-ruling the Cougars 17-1 in three innings Thursday at Canadian.

    April 12, 2014 4 Photos

Poll

What team is your favorite Oklahoma college football team?

OU (University of Oklahoma)
OSU (Oklahoma State University)
     View Results
AP Video
NDN Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.