The N.C. High School Athletic Association boys and girls basketball state championships are all on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill Saturday.
The Dean Smith Center hosts the 2A games (East Davidson vs. North Pitt girls, noon; East Lincoln vs. Farmville Central boys, 2:30 p.m.) followed by 4A (Northwest Guilford vs. Millbrook girls, 5 p.m.; Charlotte Catholic vs. Cary boys, 7:30 p.m.).
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Carmichael Arena, which hosts this year while N.C. State’s Reynolds Coliseum undergoes renovation, hosts 1A (Winston-Salem Prep vs. Plymouth girls, noon; Winston-Salem Prep vs. Voyager Academy boys, 2:30 p.m.) and 3A (Freedom vs. Northern Guilford girls, 5 p.m.; Jay M. Robinson vs. Fayetteville Terry Sanford boys, 7:30 p.m.).
NCISAA all-stars: Wake Christian’s Rob Whitfield and Crossroads Christian’s Jeremiah Green engineered a huge rally for the East in Saturday’s N.C. Private School All-Star game. The East trailed 89-80 with just under three minutes to go but won 110-101 thanks to five 3-pointers from Whitfield, who led the East with 20 points.
Cape Fear Christian’s Quentin Jackson had 17 points.
The West girls won 93-75. Durham Academy’s Liz Roberts scored 17 points.
Apex Friendship lacrosse: In its first year, Apex Friendship may have at least one postseason team. The girls lacrosse team, which like the rest of the school has only freshmen and sophomores, started its first week of play 2-0 with a 13-12 overtime victory against Panther Creek and a 7-6 win against Athens Drive.
Both opponents were playoff teams last season. Many may not have expected the Patriots to win in the first game in school history, perhaps even some Friendship players.
“I think we knew we had what it took,” said sophomore Grace Fleming, who had the game-winner against Panther Creek. “There were some doubts, but I feel like once we got in the game, we got in the zone. We believed in ourselves, and we got it done.”
Panther Creek falls: Panther Creek’s girls soccer team, the defending 4A champs, lost 1-0 to Middle Creek and 3-0 to Leesville Road in the first week of the season, the first regular-season losses since 2013.
Carrboro defense: Carrboro’s defending 2A girls soccer champs have started the season 2-0, including a 2-1 win against Union Pines. The goal conceded is half of last year’s record-setting season total.
Cleveland no-hitter: Cleveland pitcher Caleb Howard had a long ride home to soak in his no-hitter. The Rams defeated the Hurricanes 10-0 behind Howard’s five-inning no-no and also defeated Currituck County 8-2 in the Cape Hatteras Sandlot Tournament Saturday in Barco.
Orange rally: Trailing by six runs going into the sixth inning, Orange stormed back to score ten runs in the final six outs for a remarkable 11-9 victory over Northern Durham baseball on Friday.
Northern (0-2) got home runs from Spencer Smith (two) and Carl Fowler to build a 9-3 lead. Orange (2-0) started the comeback with a five-run sixth.
Raleigh Sports Club: The Raleigh Sports Club has honored Enloe boys and girls tennis coach Steve Spivey – who won 17 NCHSAA titles at Broughton – with its distinguished coach award.
The RSC also named four athletes – Ravenscroft’s Henry Atkeson, Millbrook’s Austin Cobb, Wake Forest’s Chelsey Cunningham and Cary’s Morgan Sullivan – with $2,000 scholarships for their distinguished service.
Triton baseball: Triton is leading all N&O-area baseball teams with 12 runs per game. The Hawks are 3-0 after a 12-1 five-inning win against Harnett Central on Friday.
“Our top five hitters will get on, move each other around,” said senior Aaron Hedgepeth, who homered. “The bottom of the lineup contributes all the time. We’re a team. We’re a family.”
Roxboro girls basketball: The future is bright for the Roxboro Community girls basketball, which lost 50-37 in the NCHSAA 1A East final on Tuesday. The Bulldogs have just one senior.
“We’re a young team,” Roxboro coach Brian Cousin said. “We played some tough teams and had tough games this year, but I think we have to be more consistent. Hopefully we can come back as a great team next year.”
D.H. Conley softball: Defending 4A softball champion D.H. Conley took the season opener 5-4 victory at Middle Creek on Tuesday as both teams overcame the jitters.
“We had some good moments on the offensive side and on the defensive side and the next thing you know we’re kicking the ball around or we’re making a bad baserunning decision,” D.H. Conley coach Wayne Deans said. “But then again it’s the first game of the season. ... You kind of expect those moments.”
N&O stats: N&O area stat leaders and standings will run on the scoreboard page once a week for spring sports. Baseball and softball will run Sunday, girls soccer on Monday and boys and girls lacrosse on Tuesday.
Scores and stats can be reported to the N&O by phone (919-829-4560), online (firstname.lastname@example.org) and, our most popular avenue, our online data entry system that can be done from a computer, smartphone or tablet. For more info on the online entry, you can email email@example.com for instructions.
N&O rankings: The first batch of N&O baseball, softball, girls soccer and boys and girls lacrosse rankings are scheduled for next Monday. The top 15 for baseball, softball and girls soccer will factor into the N&O Cup standings. The lacrosse rankings are top 10s.