South Johnston held off a strong comeback bid by Fayetteville Pine Forest to win the Trojan Invitational volleyball tournament on its home court Saturday afternoon. South took the first two sets by 25-17 and 25-15 counts before Pine Forest won the next two, 25-23 and 25-20. The hosts took back over in the deciding set, claiming a 15-9 win.
Emma Blackman of South Johnston was the tournament MVP with 23 kills and three blocks. South’s Reagan Byrd had 21 digs and McKinley Johnson totaled 45 assists.
Garner defeated Harnett Central in three sets to take third place in the event. South and Pine Forest claimed four-set wins over Central and Garner, respectively, in the first round.
Members of the all-tournament team were Byrd, Taylor Lee (South Johnston), Bianca Karpinecz (Pine Forest), Charli Daniels (Pine Forest), Shaylynn Hall (Garner) and Braxton Wright (Harnett Central).
North Johnston wins at WakeMed Park
North Johnston downed Trinity 1-0 in the Kickoff Classic at WakeMed Park that featured teams from across the state on Saturday. Chase Davis scored the Panthers’ goal on an assist from JoJo Richardson. The Panthers are now 5-1 on the season.
Corinth Holders fell to Hickory 3-2 in another match. Dillon Parker scored both Pirate (3-1) goals on the afternoon, while Pedro Segundo picked up an assist.
Also at the event, West Johnston defeated Northern Guilford, 6-2.
Gonzalez takes Spartans Invitational win
South Johnston’s Jacob Gonzalez grabbed the boys division victory at the annual Spartans Invitational on Saturday at Smithfield Community Park. Gonzalez won in 16 minutes, 42 seconds ahead of Holly Springs’ Gavin Kinkead.
Holly Springs swept the team championships, totaling 26 points on the boys’ side, 44 ahead of South Johnston. The Golden Hawks’ girls were led by winner Caitlyn Morton (19:58) and totaled 34 points. South Central Pitt finished second at 58 points.
Smithfield-Selma’s Caleb Silver finished third individually in 17:18. South Johnston’s Ismael Garcia took 10th. Daniel Perez of South and SSS’s Drew Topoly both finished in the top 20.
Princeton downs South Johnston
Princeton swept South Johnston in volleyball on Thursday, 25-21, 28-26, 25-18, avenging a loss from the previous week. The Bulldogs (3-1) got 13 kills and nine blocks from Daisey Eklund and nine kills from Taylor Carroll. Kelsey Peedin had three aces.
Reagan Byrd had 21 digs for South Johnston, while Emma Blackman picked up seven kills.
North Johnston sweeps North Duplin
North Johnston moved to 5-1 on the volleyball season with a 27-25, 25-21, 25-14 win over North Duplin on Thursday. Olivia Narron had nine kills and four aces in the win for the Panthers. Barrett Davis had 12 digs and 10 assists.