Having interest at two sites

Published: Saturday, March 1, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, February 28, 2003 at 10:37 p.m.
P.K. Yonge girls basketball coach Willie Powers will have his mind completely focused on opponent Jacksonville Episcopal tonight when his Blue Wave play for the Class 2A, Region 2 championship. But, once the final buzzer has sounded and he has spoken to his team, Powers admits he'll be making some calls to find out another area result.
As Eastside's coach for the 2000-01 season, Powers led the Rams to a 16-6 record and was The Gainesville Sun's coach of the year. He maintains a good relationship with the Eastside players and his former assistant of four years with Santa Fe and one with EHS, Lonnie Turner (now the Rams' coach).
And with Eastside (25-3) playing at Ocala Vanguard (29-2) for the 4A, Region 2 title, Powers says he not only feels a sense of pride for his work at top-ranked P.K. Yonge (22-4), but also feels like he helped start something very good at EHS.
"It would be real neat," Powers said when asked if it would be special to see both teams in Lakeland for the final four next week. "I can see some of the fruits of my labor.
"Since I left, Lonnie has taken that team and done great things. I'm not sure I could have done the same. He's done a tremendous job."
Powers isn't the only member of the Blue Wave program to have a tie to the Rams.
Guard Petrina Goodman, a former starter at Eastside, transferred to P.K. Yonge prior to the school year and has contributed greatly to the Blue Wave's success.
"I keep in touch with Lonnie and all of the players over there and follow how they're doing," said Powers, whose team went 1-1 with the Rams this season (each winning on the road). "And (Goodman is) friends with them, too."
You can reach John Patton by calling 374-5074 or by e-mail at pattonj@gvillesun.com.

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