Green Hope High, a perennial sports powerhouse, pulled away in the first N&O Cup All-Sports competition.
The program awards points to schools based on their finish in the final News & Observer rankings in nine different sports. Rankings from football, volleyball, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, volleyball, baseball and softball are used to determine the winner.
The N&O also ranks boys and girls lacrosse teams, but did not include those in the Cup standings because a majority of area schools does not field lacrosse teams. The N&O ranks 20 teams in football, but awarded Cup points to only the top 15.
Green Hope has won three consecutive N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A Wells Fargo Cups, which is based on advancing in the NCHSAA playoffs. The N&O Cup is different because it does not include some of the Falcons strongest sports, such as cross country, gymnastics, dual-team tennis, golf and swimming.
This will mean an awful lot to our community, said Wayne Bragg, the Green Hope athletic director.
When you consider all of the programs in our area and look at it as a whole, it is really significant to win this, especially since many of the sports that we usually are strong in were not a factor.
Bragg said one part of the schools athletic success has been athletes playing more than one sport.
We have a lot of boys and girls who play multiple sports and help us in several areas, he said. I think our kids enjoy playing here.
Green Hope finished atop the N&O rankings in boys and girls soccer and was third in baseball, fifth in volleyball and sixth in girls basketball. The Falcons also were 14th in boys basketball and 15th in softball. They were not ranked in football or wrestling.
The N&O Cup ranks the teams without regard to NCHSAA, N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association, Christian School or independent affiliation or classification.
Chapel Hill, a 3A school, finished second in the N&O Cup, helped by a No. 2 finish in girls basketball, a No. 4 finish in volleyball, No. 5 in girls soccer and No. 6 finishes in boys soccer and boys basketball.
Cardinal Gibbons, another 3A school, was third and Garner was fourth.
Fifty-seven schools, including the Wake Home School Warriors baseball team, were represented in the nine N&O polls.
Green Hope will be awarded a trophy during the fall.