Florien’s Strother enters state High School Sports Hall of Fame

OFFICIALLY A LEGEND:  Florien girls basketball coach Dewain Strother (middle) was inducted in the Louisiana High School Sports Hall of Fame Tuesday night in Baton Rouge. Presenting his award were Jimmy Anderson (at left) and Kathy Holloway of the LHSCA’s Hall of Fame committee. (Photo by ROMA PICS, courtesy Louisiana High School Coaches Association)

Tuesday night in Baton Rouge, just-retired Florien High School girls’ basketball coach Dewain Strother officially became one of the legends in high school sports in Louisiana.

He was among 10 people inducted into the Louisiana High School Sports Hall of Fame, which is administered by the Louisiana High School Coaches Association.

Strother retired from coaching after leading Florien to the 21st state tournament semifinal appearance in his 40 seasons on the Lady Black Cats’ coach.

He is ending a 49-year career in education, all at Florien, when classes wrap up next month.

Strother’s accomplishments include earning the Sabine Parish Teacher of the Year honor for 1982-83.

He is best known for his incredible girls’ basketball coaching record. Florien has won 1,235 games and lost only 395 since he started the program in 1982.

That wins total is the best by any girls basketball coach in Louisiana and is second all-time in the nation.

Florien has won six state championships and finished second in the state another five times in its 21 Final Four appearances. All but one of his 40 teams reached the state playoffs.

His last team finished 29-3 and played in the state semifinals.

Remarkably, Strother has coached the Ladycats to the LHSAA Final Four in each location the championship has been staged:  Shreveport, Monroe, Alexandria, Hammond and Lake Charles.

Strother has been the state Class B coach of the year five times, including this past season. He was named district coach of the year 24 times.

The Shreveport Times named him All-Area coach of the year five times, and he was the Shreveport Journal’s Coach of the Year three times.

Strother has been athletic director for over 30 years at Florien, and has also served at times as softball coach and golf coach.

He has taught social studies in the 7th and 8th grades for over 20 years.

Strother graduated from Northwestern State University in 1975 and earned his master’s in education from NSU in 1982. He has been recognized by the NSU Demon and Lady Demon basketball programs in the “Grads Done Good” display in Prather Coliseum, where a poster describing his career is in a display case along with other highly-successful alumni who have enjoyed great success coaching basketball.

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