PITSBURG – Franklin Monroe’s Abbey Moore was named Southwest District D-IV basketball coach of the year by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association after leading the Lady Jets to a 19-3 regular season record, a record for the school’s most wins in a season.
“I have been very fortunate to have the group of girls that I have,” said Moore. “They got it done on the floor this year and that’s where this award comes from – their hard work and their effort. I couldn’t have done it without the support from my staff and the administration here at the school. They’re very supportive. I am very blessed to be a part of this community and wouldn’t want to do it anywhere else.”
“Coach Moore, we couldn’t be more proud of all that she’s accomplished,” said Franklin Monroe High School Principal PJ Burgett. “She’s just a humble coach. If you ask her, everything that they’ve accomplished all goes back to the kids, it’s always all about the kids.”
“I don’t think you will ever get her to take credit for all the work that she does behind the scenes putting them into position to be successful,” added Burgett. “Just all around great person, great coach. The district couldn’t be more proud of her and to have her heading up our girls program.”
Coach Moore, the mother of three small children gives credit to husband, Chase, as she manages to balance coaching and the duties of a mother and wife.
“The amount of time that I put into this program makes it difficult to be a mom and wife to my husband,” Moore stated. “There is no way I could do it without Chase, whether it’s coming home and the kids already having supper and their baths – without that there’s no way I could put the amount of time I do into this program, but these girls make it easy to put that extra time in. They make it worth it and that I think contributes to a lot of our success.”
“I am very proud of Abbey and all of her girls,” said FM Athletic Director Tyler Rhodes. “I think being voted as Coach of the Year is a testament to the many hours in season and off season that Abbey puts into our girls and the program. I think Abbey would tell you this award is a testament of our girls as well.”
“They have bought into our program and bought into what Abbey is teaching them,” added Rhodes. “Our girls work hard to get better and don’t settle for mediocrity. Abbey and her family has gone through a lot behind the scenes that past several months, and to see Abbey continue to focus, dedicate the hours needed, and keep the program first has been simply amazing. I am extremely happy for her and excited for the future of FM Lady Jets Basketball.”
An added struggle for Coach Moore this season was her father Bill Davenport battling stage four bladder cancer.
“It’s been rough, it’s been a tough year,” shared Moore. “I think back to that game that these girls came out and showed their support for my dad and they wore his shirts, his “fighter” shirts. At that point it kind of put me over the top and from there on, that was our slogan all year – to be fighters on and off the floor.”
“This season has meant a lot more and there is no way I could have gotten through some of the things that I’ve battled in my own life if I didn’t have these girls in my life,” added Moore. “We have supported each other through good and bad and it’s not just me either. These girls, nobody has any idea what these kids go through and they’ve battled their own battles off the floor too.”
“I’ve been there as much for them as they’ve been there for me and that’s just going to kind of be our slogan going forward in this program – to be fighters and when you’re in a situation, in a battle whether it’s on the floor or its off the floor, in life you never give up and you battle through it and you always come out on top.”
Coach Moore was on the first Lady Jets basketball team to earn a District Championship and play in a regional semi-final game before going on to play basketball at Capital University under legendary Coach Dixie Jeffers who had her 700th win this year.
“Our community is amazing,” said Moore. “I have my kids in this community because I want them to grow up and be a part of it as well.”
“I feel very fortunate to be in this position,” Moore said. “We have big goals set moving forward. I know I’m going to do whatever I can to reach those goals and I know I have a group of girls that are willing to do the same.”
“Brandy does an excellent job,” Coach Moore said of her JV coach Brandy Fourman. “She did phenomenal this year and just having her as that support person has been a huge help. I think of her more as a sister than an assistant.”
The Moore’s three children include: six year old kindergartener and Lady Jets team ball-girl, Lilly, four year old Navie who attends pre-school and Toby, who will be celebrating his first birthday this Thursday.
“Things are looking great,” Coach Moore concluded with a comment about her father. “He had his last treatment last week – his final treatment and his test results are coming back good. He is doing great.”
PHOTO CAPTION: Franklin Monroe Lady Jets basketball coach Abbey Moore. (Gaylen Blosser photo)