Chapel Hill: Sports

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Cardinal Gibbons celebrates winning its 2014 state volleyball championship – the Crusaders’ sixth straight in the NCHSAA 3A.
Cardinal Gibbons celebrates winning its 2014 state volleyball championship – the Crusaders’ sixth straight in the NCHSAA 3A.

Gibbons wants to move up to 4A

Cardinal Gibbons will request during the fall meeting of the the N.C. High School Athletic Association that the school be placed in a 4A athletic conference for the next two years.

The NCHSAA aligns member school into conferences for four-year periods, but the NCHSAA Board of Directors can make adjustments after two years.

Gibbons currently plays in the Big Eight 3A Conference alongside local teams like Chapel Hill, Northwood, Orange and Cedar Ridge. The school has met with representatives of the PAC-6 4A Conference about the possibility of joining that league if the NCHSAA allows Gibbons to move up from the 3A classification, according to Gibbons principal Jason Curtis.

If Gibbons is allowed to move and is accepted into the PAC-Six, both the Big Eight 3A and the PAC-6 would have seven schools.

“Our enrollment is growing and our participation rate is increasing,” Curtis said. “We believe we would be a good fit in 4A.”

Gibbons’ enrollment, according to NCHSAA figures used in football playoff pairings, is 1,430. The Crusaders are larger than current PAC-6 member Person (1,332) and about the same size as East Chapel Hill (1,421) and Northern Durham (1,489). Durham Jordan (1,849), Durham Riverside (1,849) and Durham Hillside (1,647) have more students.

Gibbons, a non-boarding parochial schools, is the third largest school in the Big Eight 3A behind Southern Durham (1,779) and Chapel Hill (1,469).

The Crusaders’ athletic program has been exceptional. Since joining the NCHSAA in 2005, Gibbons has won 50 NCHSAA championships, including girls golf, boys soccer, boys cross country, girls cross country, girls tennis and volleyball this fall.

The NCHSAA board also has rarely revised conferences in the middle of four-year blocks except for adding new schools,

but Gibbons’ situation is unique because of its athletic success and its rapid growth.

Moore had a good night in UNC’s win at Duke

Overlooked by many people in Carolina’s 45-20 victory at Duke was the performance of East Chapel Hill alum Thomas Moore as the Tar Heels’ place-kicker. Moore was 6-for-6 on extra points and kicked a 30-yard field goal that gave UNC its biggest lead of the night, at 38-7 midway through the third quarter.

Moore, a UNC senior, and sophomore Nick Weiler were engaged in a duel for the starting PK spot in early November, after both had missed field goals in mid-season. Moore seems to have won the job back. His 30-yarder Thursday night was the longest successful field goal this year for the Tar Heels.

Times for NCHSAA football finals are set

The NCHSAA state 3AA football championship game is scheduled to kick off at 8 p.m. Dec. 13 in Carter-Finley Stadium, capping a full day of games in Raleigh and Winston-Salem.

Carter-Finley also will host the the 1AA game at 7:30 p.m. that Friday. Saturday games include 1A (noon), 3A (4 p.m.) and 3A (8 p.m.).

The 4A title game will be Friday night at 7:30 at BB&T Field in Winston-Salem. Saturday’s games in Winston-Salem will be: the 2A final (noon), 2AA (4 p.m.) and 4AA (8 p.m.)

Fast turnaround time at Cedar Ridge for Pappas

Peyton Pappas, the junior quarterback for the Cedar Ridge football team, didn’t take long to switch to basketball. He scored 31 points in the Red Wolves’ 66-57 win over Carrboro on Tuesday.

Shannonhouse honored at basketball game

Shannonhouse honored: Carolyn Shannonhouse, a former assistant commissioner of the NCHSAA, was honored during Cardinal Gibbons’ home basketball games Friday against Cary. Shannonhouse, who coached girls basketball at Cary before becoming an assistant commissioner of the NCHSAA in Chapel Hill, retired from the high school sports association last summer.

Friday’s games at Gibbons were designated as “White Out” games, where spectators were invited to wear white T-shirts inscribed with something for which they are grateful.