In 21 years as White Oak High School head basketball coach, Ron Boyette has compiled a school record 469 wins and nine district championships.
But his 469th win was really special — a 61-53 victory over Brock. It was in the Class 2A state basketball championship game in Austin.
Boyette, a 1984 graduate of White Oak, led the Roughnecks to a 22-game winning streak to end the season and register the third state basketball title in school history — the first since 1957.
It was truly a magical season for the Roughnecks and for his effort; Boyette has been named the All-East Texas Boys Basketball Coach of the Year.
The Roughnecks have always been an East Texas powerhouse. In the 1950s, Emil Hanicak led White Oak to two state titles — 1953 and 1957.
And later Dan Noll had always had the Roughnecks in contention. In fact, Boyette played for his mentor Noll.
He followed in Noll’s footsteps and the 25-year-old Boyette took over the White Oak program in 1991.
The team got close to Austin last season, compiling a mark of 30-4.
And this year the Roughnecks got to the capital city.
“The past two seasons, I felt like we had teams capable of making the state tournament,” Boyette said. “I thought we could beat anyone in our region, but I also knew there were three or four really good teams that could beat us.
“I thought if we made it to the regional tournament, we had a good shot.”
The Roughnecks, led by All-East Texas first-teamer Caleb Carr, made the regional tournament in Nacogdoches and then rallied from an 11-point second-half deficit to register a 65-63 win over Kountze in the regional championship.
The Roughnecks followed in Austin by dethroning defending champion and No. 1-ranked Idalou 67-45 in the state semifinals. And they topped it off by beating Brock in the title game.
Boyette said he enjoyed coaching the Roughnecks, a team that “played together and played good defense.”
The hard work equaled a school-record 37-1 mark and another championship banner to hang at E.B. Carrington Gymnasium.
Notes: The Championship/Ring ceremony for the basketball squad is scheduled for Monday, May 21 at 6:30 p.m. at the high school. Tickets are $12 and will be catered by Texas Roadhouse. … Boyette’s assistant coaches are Billy Terry and Jeff Hampton.