Follow local high school sports teams live with play-by-play broadcasts from reporters Jennifer Fierro and Ben Shields. You never need to miss Mustangs or Bulldogs football action again!
Fierro reports on local and national sports on the half-hour throughout the day on weekdays and covers breaking news as it happens.
To follow your favorite teams, tune in to KBEY 103.9 FM for the best sports coverage from the most experienced sports journalists in the Highland Lakes.
The bottom of the hour on KBEY 103.9 FM includes a sports break, and few are more eager to share those reports than reporter Jennifer Fierro.
Fierro has been a journalist with Victory Publishing for almost a decade and is privileged to be part of several award-winning staffs.
“Just like the teams I cover,” she says with a smile, “there’s no greater feeling on a professional level than winning the top team awards and sharing it with those who are there every step of the way.”
When the announcement came that Victory Publishing had acquired KBEY 103.9 Radio Picayune, Fierro viewed it as a natural progression in her career. She graduated from Abilene Christine University in 1997 with a degree in broadcast journalism.
“After spending years as a print reporter, adding radio just fit,” she says.
Perhaps one of Fierro’s strengths might be her knowledge of the history of Highland Lakes sports, which she began gathering decades ago thanks to being a graduate of Marble Falls High School.
After her stint at ACU, she worked as a sports reporter in New Mexico and was named managing editor at papers in Arizona and Boerne. She returned to the Highland Lakes in 2005 and saw that Victory Publishing was looking for a reporter.
“The Picayune sets the bar for community newspapers,” she said. “So it was a no-brainer to apply.”
Turns out, it was a good time to return to reporting. The Highland Lakes sports scene was exploding thanks to two starting college football players (Stephen McGee and Jordan Shipley), an NCAA middle-distance running champion (Leonel Manzano) and high school athletes who were making annual treks to state tournaments and meets year in and year out.
In many ways, Fierro has fulfilled much of her aspirations of covering the Olympics, national championships and the NBA thanks to the draw of the Highland Lakes. And she counts it a blessing to document the local high school sports teams each year. She can proudly say she remembers when many of those athletes got their start in elementary school.
“I don’t take for granted the opportunity of being a sports reporter right here in Burnet and Llano counties,” she said. “Growing up, I always knew this area boasted of some of the best athletes in the state. I’m happy these players are finally getting the credit they deserve.”
You can hear Fierro’s reports on KBEY 103.9 FM Radio Picayune at 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. and 12:30, 4:30, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekdays. She also provides video sports reports for DailyTrib.com and writes for The Picayune. She and fellow broadcaster/reporter Ben Shields will be providing live coverage of local high school sports teams throughout the year as well.
“I always wanted to do everything, and this place gives me the chance,” Fierro says.
The voice and expertise of Ben Shields has brought the sound of local radio to the ears of the Highland Lakes for almost 10 years now.
“I enjoy being in a market like Marble Falls and the Highland Lakes,” he says. “You get to know your listeners and the local officials.”
A Hill Country native, Shields briefly left home to attend Stephen F. Austin University in the Piney Woods region of East Texas. While there, he called his first on-air ballgame and fell in love with play-by-play announcing.
“I always liked listening to games on the radio,” he says. “I always practiced when I was a little kid. I turned down the TV and called the games myself.”
After graduating in 2000, he headed back to the Hill Country, where he joined KHLB radio. Four years later, KHLB bought KBEY, and Shields stuck around.
When Victory Publishing Inc. and The Picayune purchased KBEY 103.9 FM in early 2013, they asked Shields to stay on. He and his wife, Andrea, with their new baby girl, Hadley, agreed.
In college, Shields began as a part-time board operator and an on-air talent at the school’s station, KSAU. He immediately knew it was what he wanted to do.
“It’s very intimate,” he says of the radio experience. “You can make it sound like it’s one-on-one contact with the listener.”
Which is why he thinks radio has endured as a medium despite the threat of television in the 1950s and the Internet today.
In 2004, Shields became the voice of Burnet High School athletics, handling the play-by-play responsibilities at locally broadcast games. He then added Llano High School, Faith Academy of Marble Falls and Liberty Hill High School coverage to his repertoire. In 2012, he took on the Marble Falls High School Mustangs.
Throughout the years, Shields has worked in every aspect of radio, including as a news reporter, an on-air personality and a producer.
“I like that I can do a variety of duties at the station,” Shields says. “It never gets boring.”
And though Shields can pick up any task at KBEY and run with it, he loves covering sports, especially football, the best.
“I enjoy seeing the student-athletes grow and achieve success over the years,” he says.
Kind of how Highland Lakes listeners have watched — well, heard — Shields grow and achieve success over the years.