By BOB PUTNAM, Times Staff Writer
Published September 15, 2005
Moments after Largo lost in the Class 5A region final last season, the players wiped away tears and said they fully expected to make it back.
If the Packers do return, it will be with a new coach.
Leonard Williams stepped down after five seasons and will serve as an assistant.
"I just wanted to take a step back and let someone else take the reins," Williams said.
He did not have to search long for his replacement.
Dee Feazell, 22, a former standout at the school who served as an assistant the past two seasons, will take over.
"It's really nothing new to me," Feazell said. "It's a different position, but the same territory."
Feazell takes over a team that went 23-6 and advanced to the region final for the first time. The Packers return a wealth of talent with point guard and Dee's sister Tish Feazell, shooter Chelsea Simpson and Alexis Henry all seniors.
That gives Largo the confidence it will be the team to beat in the north county and the favorite to win its district.
To do that, the Packers will have to beat Clearwater for the first time since 2000. Dee was the one who hit the winning shot with three seconds left in Largo's last win against the Tornadoes.
"We have a strong nucleus coming back and should be able to do some things," Dee said.
The Packers, however, did lose some of their depth when Brittany Carrannante and Lauren Lee transferred to Clearwater. The two will help a Tornadoes team that lost eight seniors, including standout guards Nicole Ryan and Rachel Hammond.
"It hurts because those are two players we had in our system the past two seasons," Dee said. "But we're not going to pout or whine about that. We'll move on. It's a decision that Brittany and Lauren felt they needed to make and we wish them nothing but the best."