Mains made her mark at Knoxville Catholic

Speedy Harmon is male honoree


By Steve Williams

Sydney Mains wasn’t just a shooter in her final season at Knoxville Catholic. She was a marksman.

And she displayed her accuracy despite an array of injuries.

“Sydney has had a back and hip injury this year along with the (bandaged) thumb and overcoming the ACL, MCL and PCL injury (from 2023),” pointed out her dad and Head Coach Travis Mains at the end of the regular season.

The blonde bomber averaged 18.5 points and was voted The Knoxville Focus / Coaches’ Knox County Player of the Year.

By season’s end, the 5-10 combo guard had led the Lady Irish to their second straight Division II-AA state championship and was polishing off 39 percent accuracy from 3-point range.

In addition to her talents on the court, Mains is Catholic’s female Student-Athlete of the Year.

She led the Lady Irish to a second straight state title in March and was announced as Miss Basketball in that division.

The Knoxville News Sentinel and 5Star Preps each chose Mains as their Player of the Year.

Sydney also stood out in the classroom with a 3.7 grade point average and will be going to Florida Atlantic University on a basketball scholarship.

A two-time state tournament MVP and McDonald’s All-American nominee, Mains finished sixth all-time in Tennessee high school girls basketball for her 356 three-point baskets. She also ended her prep career as the all-time leading scorer (2,325 points) at Knoxville Catholic for both boys and girls.

While known for her shooting, Sydney was all over the court and averaged six rebounds, three assists and three steals per game during the 2023-24 regular season.

“Tireless work ethic and high basketball IQ allowed her to be an outstanding teammate and leader for the Knoxville Catholic Lady Irish,” said Coach Mains.

Braylon Harmon (football and track) is the KCHS male honoree. Speed is his forte.

The Catholic standout decommitted from Wofford and signed with the University of Tennessee on National Signing Day.

Harmon returned four kickoffs and two punts for touchdowns his senior season and was the nation’s leader in return yards. He also was an excellent receiver and totaled 2,413 all-purpose yards.

No. 25’s honors included being the Division II-AAA Region Player of the Year and All-State. The Knoxville News Sentinel and 5Star Preps tabbed him Player of the Year. He also landed a first-team spot on The Knoxville Focus / Coaches’ All-Knox County team as the kick return specialist.

Braylon sparkled in academics too with a 3.8 GPA.

“There couldn’t be more deserving winners for Athletes of the Year for our school,” stated Knoxville Catholic Athletic Director Jason Surlas to Mains and Harmon in an email.