Notebook: Johnathan Alston commits to N.C. State, Norris goes for 500th win

cgrant@newsobserver.comFebruary 5, 2013 

Broughton at Cary football 08-19-2011

Broughton's head coach Chris Martin.Broughton at Cary on Friday night, August,19 2011 at Cary High School in Cary,NC. Cary defeated Broughton 14-7.

2011 NEWS & OBSERVER FILE PHOTO

As Chris Martin drove his usual route to Broughton High School Thursday morning, it finally hit him.

“This is the first time in 24 years that I haven’t had to think about after school or what my coaching responsibilities are, and it is a little different,” Martin said.

A day earlier, he had announced his resignation as the Capitals head football coach, a position he has held since 2004.

Martin said his decision was based mostly on what he thought would be best for the players.

“You get a 45-60 record over nine years, and it’s just one of those things where you hope to get things jump-started again and get some new blood in there,” he said. “I’ve been weighing it around for a few months, and I just prayed on it, and it’s just one of those times I had to do it for the kids. I just want the atmosphere to hopefully change.”

The Caps went 2-9 overall and 2-5 in Cap-8 play last year, missing the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

Alston commits to N.C. State: Bunn senior football player Johnathan Alston committed to N.C. State on Thursday.

Alston is a 6-foot-3, 200-pound wide receiver/defensive back who starred on a Wildcats team that went 10-3 last season. Rivals.com ranked him as the 24th-best prospect in the state and gave Alston a 3-star rating.

500 wins: It was only a few months ago that Chapel Hill girls’ basketball coach Sherry Norris won her 700th volleyball game. This week, the former N.C. High School Athletic Association women’s coach of the year will be going for her 500th basketball win.

The Tigers, ranked third in The News & Observer area, are at Southern Vance Tuesday.

“It just means I’ve been really fortunate to have had a lot of really good kids and a lot of really good athletes come through our system,” Norris said.

Regional swimming: East Chapel Hill swept the 4A Central swimming regional Saturday in Greensboro, with the boys totaling 385 points and the girls scoring 396.5.

Chapel Hill’s girls won the 3A East regional Saturday evening in Cary with 468 points while Cardinal Gibbons was second with 362. The Gibbons boys won the regional title with 449 points and Chapel Hill was second with 421.

In the 1A/2A East regional Friday in Cary, N.C. Science & Math’s boys and Raleigh Charter’s girls were tops. The Carrboro, Corinth Holders and Raleigh Charter boys took second, third and fourth respectively, as did the Carrboro, Northwood and N.C. Science & Math girls.

The state swimming and diving championships are set for this week at the Triangle Aquatic Center in Cary. The 4A finals will be Thursday at 4 p.m., 3A will be Friday and 1A/2A will be Saturday.

Gymnastics state champions: Green Hope’s gymnastics team won its second straight state title Friday at the Raleigh School of Gymnastics.

The Falcons had the top three individuals – freshman Drew Grantham and sophomores Priya Kamath and Shay Ramsey – who all scored above a 39.

Grantham placed first in all of the events, including a perfect 10 in floor, for an all-around score of 39.7 out of a possible 40. Meet officials said the all-around score was likely a state record.

“We just have a dynamic group,” said Green Hope coach Cindy Cotten. “It might be a little early to talk about next year, but I can see us going for three (consecutive titles).”

Millbrook was second and Enloe was third in the large teams division.

Harnett Central won the small teams state title while Middle Creek and Apex were second and third, respectively.

The NCHSAA does not sanction the gymnastics championships, but many area schools field varsity programs.

Each meet also featured an “all-stars” competition, with individuals from several other schools competing outside of the team format.

Athens Drive’s Alyssa Tucker swept each event to take first place in the evening session. South Johnston’s Jamie Barbour took first among all-stars earlier in the day.

Milestone scoring: Three area basketball players hit scoring milestones late last month: Cary Christian’s Amy Van Deventer scored her 1,000th career point in a 55-40 win against Halifax Academy; Corinth Holders’ Kenny Collins became the first player in school history to reach 1,000 points in a 58-49 win against North Johnston; and Bunn’s Whitney Bunn surpassed the 1,500-point mark in a 44-30 win against Warren County.

W.E. Warnock, J. Mike Blake and D. Clay Best contributed to this report.

Grant: 919-829-4538

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