Trinity player's miracle

Staff WriterMarch 10, 2004 

Trinity (28-1), which will play Greensboro Dudley (25-7) on Saturday for the NCHSAA 3-A boys title, is led by shooter Josh Smith.

The 5-foot-10 senior holds the state record for 3-point baskets in a career and in a game and has scored more than 2,000 points in his career.

But the most amazing player on the team is senior Jonathan Watts, who was not expected to live following an automobile accident on Nov. 27.

A truck hit the driver-side door as Watts drove himself to school. Early reports indicated that he had died in the crash.

He may have survived because a state trooper had responded to a minor accident nearby and was available to revive Watts when he stopped breathing and to help stem the loss of blood.

Watts, Trinity's senior class president, suffered a broken arm, a fractured eye socket, a broken nose, head injuries and a collapsed lung and spent a week in intensive care.

He rejoined the team in January, however, and scored 10 points in the fourth quarter of a 60-47 regional final victory over Matthews Weddington.

Trinity starts three seniors who have been starters since their freshman year. They have helped the Bulldogs build an 82-7 record during their careers.

REYNOLDS LOADED: Wakefield coach Tom Kinkelaar said Winston-Salem Reynolds, the Wolverines' opponent in the 4-A final Friday, looks like a college team.

"You think they should be in the Colonial Conference or Conference USA," Kinkelaar said. "But we can play with them if we play well."

RAVENS RALLY: Ravenscroft beat Wake Christian 6-5 in baseball last Friday thanks to home runs. Ravenscroft first baseman Matt Hunter hit two home runs, and Ravens catcher Corey Bass slammed a seventh-inning, two-out, 3-run home run to rally the Ravens from a 5-3 deficit.

CONTENTED EX-COACH: Asked what salary he would demand to coach high school football again, former Richmond County coach Daryl Barnes replied: "There isn't enough money. I enjoyed my coaching days, but they are behind me now."

Barnes led Richmond football to five football state titles. He is the principal at Trinity.

LEAPER: Southern Durham girls coach Ken Blocker says few players have the jumping credentials of 6-foot Spartan freshman Patience Coleman.

Coleman won the NCHSAA indoor track high jump title and her leap of 5 feet, 10 inches is the No. 2-ranked jump in the country this year.

Immediately after Saturday's 5 p.m. title game against Asheville, Coleman will leave for Maryland to compete in the national high school track indoor championships.

She will have to do some leaping against Asheville, which is led by 6-5 Danielle Burgin and 6-2 Rashanda McCants.

Staff writer Tim Stevens can be reached at 829-8910 or tstevens@newsobserver.com

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