Girls' basketball preview: Coronado coach, Sand Creek guard play sibling rivalry

By Justin Shaw preps@gazette.com - Published: December 2, 2013 | 11:10 pm 0

Coronado girls' basketball coach Lavon Jackson has been coaching his little sister since she was 5 years old. Now, there's a chance she will could use the skills he taught her against his team.

Jackson's sister, Taylore Thomas, is a junior guard at Sand Creek, and while there are no regular-season matchups scheduled between her and her brother, it's a possibility it could happen in the Class 4A playoffs at season's end.

Making matters even more interesting is the fact that Thomas lives with Jackson, which makes for some fun dinner conversations.

"It was easier for school and basketball to live with him," Thomas said. "It's definitely made me a better player because he tells me things I can improve on. We always talk about basketball and who to look out for on other teams, but not plays or anything like that."

The siblings must mix living under the same roof with both wanting success for themselves and their teams. Although it would've been a natural fit for Thomas to transfer to Coronado when her brother took the head coaching job before last season, she's remained a Scorpion.

"It's kind of tough sometimes, but I know she's in great hands with coach (Jamie) Carey," Jackson said. "She's been in District 49 her whole life, and I didn't want her to leave her friends. But if she had wanted to come, she would've been welcomed with open arms."

Thomas said that transferring never really crossed her mind because Sand Creek has always been home.

"You have to finish where you start," she said. "Of course, he's going to talk about me coming to play for him and want me to, but it was always my decision in the end.

"Sand Creek is a great program and we all work together to accomplish the goals we set at the beginning of the year. We want a state title; I feel like we can win the championship, but we all have to have heart to do it."

While Sand Creek made an appearance in the 4A quarterfinals last season, Coronado is hoping to be on the up-slope after an 8-16 season.

"I think we're going to be very good this year, and we have everybody coming back and a year older with more experience," Jackson said. "We're looking good in practices and scrimmages and it looks a lot better than it did last year."

The siblings said they often talk of a potential matchup, but with differing opinions on the outcome.

"It would be tough to play against her, but I do know her weaknesses and I'd be able to shut her down a little bit." Jackson said. "It would be really tough for our parents though."

Thomas says their parents would probably sit one on each side and switch at halftime. As for shutting her down, Thomas has different thoughts.

"He knows some of my weaknesses, but I also know how he coaches and what he likes to do in certain situations, so it depends," she said. "I think my team would win, but we'd have to see what happens when the time comes."

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