4-17-24 roundup: Pro basketball, soccer and baseball, College baseball, High school baseball and softball, Middle school baseball and soccer, Auto racing

By Richard Walker

Now that the Charlotte Hornets’ 2023-24 season is over and the franchise’s winningest coach Steve Clifford is moving into an advisory role, who will be the organization’s next head coach and when will that coach be hired?

Boston Celtics assistant coach Charles Lee

With 2 coaches previously considered strong candidates recently being hired elsewhere, some may think the Hornets will try to strike quickly.

However, the coach many see as the favorite may be coaching throughout the 2024 NBA playoffs as Boston assistant Charles Lee currently works for the Eastern Conference’s top seed.

And you don’t have to have a long memory to remember that just 2 years ago, the Hornets waited an thought they had an agreement with Golden State assistant Kenny Atkinson during the Warriors’ 2022 title runs only to have Atkinson decline the job.

That led then-owner Michael Jordan and then-general manager Mitch Kupchak to re-hire Clifford as head coach.

This time around, Clifford will be a consultant to a new general manager (Jeff Peterson) and new owners (Rick Schnall and Gabe Plotkin).

“In terms of what I’m looking for, I want guys who are going to be a true partner with not only the front office, but ownership and the performance team,” Peterson said recently when he and Clifford announced the coach’s retirement. “Obviously, someone who can hold the players accountable, relate to the players and get the best out of them, communicate with them, teach them effectively. Someone who’s competitive.”

Lee worked in the Atlanta Hawks’ organization when Peterson and Schnall also were there. Lee was an assistant coach under then-Hawks head coach Mike Budenholzer and remained Budenholzer’s assistant when he went to the Milwaukee Bucks before being hired this season by the Celtics.

Already off the list of potential candidates are Sacramento Kings associate coach Jordi Fernandez and Phoenix Suns associate head coach Kevin Young; Fernandez reportedly will be hired as Brooklyn Nets head coach with Young being hired as BYU head college basketball coach.

Other interviews have been reportedly scheduled interviews with Lee, Denver Nuggets assistant David Adelman, Houston Rockets assistant Royal Ivey, Los Angeles Clippers assistant Jay Larranaga, Los Angeles Lakers assistant Jordan Ott, former Vanderbilt University, Toronto Raptors G League coach and University of North Carolina star Jerry Stackhouse and Sacramento Kings G League head coach and former Duke University women’s basketball star Lindsey Harding.











Pro basketball

The NBA playoff pairings:

-Play-in tournament
April 16
West No. 8 (L.A. Lakers) at West No. 7 (New Orleans) – L.A. Lakers 110-106

April 16
West No. 10 (Golden State) at West No. 9 (Sacramento) – Sacramento 118-94

April 17
East No. 8 (Miami) at East No. 7 (Philadelphia) – Philadelphia 105-104

April 17
East No. 10 (Atlanta) at East No. 9 (Chicago)

April 19
West No. 7 (New Orleans) vs. West No. 9 (Sacramento) – Winner becomes West No. 8

April 19
East No. 8 (Miami) vs. East No. 10-East No. 9 winner – Winner becomes East No. 8

-First round
East No. 1 (Boston) vs. East No. 8
April 21 at Boston
April 24 at Boston
April 27 at East No. 8
April 29 at East No. 8
May 1 at Boston
May 3 at East No. 8
May 5 at Boston

East No. 2 (New York) vs. East No. 7 (Philadelphia)
April 20 at New York
April 22 at New York
April 25 at Philadelphia
April 28 at Philadelphia
April 30 at New York
May 2 at Philadelphia
May 4 at New York

East No. 3 (Milwaukee) vs. East No. 6 (Indiana)
April 21 at Milwaukee
April 23 at Milwaukee
April 26 at Indiana
April 28 at Indiana
April 30 at Milwaukee
May 2 at Indiana
May 4 at Milwaukee

East No. 4 (Cleveland) vs. East No. 5 (Orlando)
April 20 at Cleveland
April 22 at Cleveland
April 25 at Orlando
April 27 at Orlando
April 30 at Cleveland
May 3 at Orlando
May 5 at Cleveland

West No. 1 (Oklahoma City) vs. West No. 8
April 21 at Oklahoma City
April 24 at Oklahoma City
April 27 at West No. 8
April 29 at West No. 8
May 1 at Oklahoma City
May 3 at West No. 8
May 5 at Oklahoma City

West No. 2 (Denver) vs. West No. 7 (L.A. Lakers)
April 20 at Denver
April 22 at Denver
April 25 at L.A. Lakers
April 27 at L.A. Lakers
April 29 at Denver
May 2 at L.A. Lakers
May 4 at Denver

West No. 3 (Minnesota) vs. West No. 6 (Phoenix)
April 20 at Minnesota
April 23 at Minnesota
April 26 at Phoenix
April 28 at Phoenix
April 30 at Minnesota
May 2 at Phoenix
May 4 at Minnesota

West No. 4 (L.A. Clippers) vs. West No. 5 (Dallas)
April 21 at L.A. Clippers
April 23 at L.A. Clippers
April 26 at Dallas
April 28 at Dallas
May 1 at L.A. Clippers
May 3 at Dallas
May 5 at L.A. Clippers








High school baseball

Here is the area schedule:

(Tuesday, April 16)
East Lincoln 6, St. Stephens 2: Starter and winner Barrett Erwin (5 innings), relievers Ty Davis (1 1/3 inning) and Carson Dahle (2/3 innings, save), Matthew Phuntek (hit, run, stolen base), Trey Spees (3 hits, 3 runs, 2 stolen bases), Evan Matile (double, 2 walks, run, RBI, stolen base), J.T. Roche (double, run, 2 RBIs, stolen base) and Brandon Washington (hit, 2 RBIs) led East Lincoln.

Bessemer City 11, Shelby 0

(Wednesday, April 17)
Burns 8, East Gaston 0

North Lincoln 18, Statesville 5

Central Academy 8, Lincolnton 6

Lincoln Charter 3, Mallard Creek 2

Palisades 18, Ashbrook 7 (5 innings)

Cherryville 9, West Lincoln 7

(Thursday, April 18)
Crest at South Point
Metrolina at Gaston Day
Community School of Davidson at Lincoln Charter
Bradford Prep at Piedmont Community Charter

(Friday, April 19)
Ashbrook at North Gaston
Cramer at Huss
Kings Mountain at Forestview
Bessemer City at Shelby
Highland Tech at Cherryville
North Lincoln at East Lincoln
Lincolnton at East Burke
West Lincoln at West Caldwell
Corvian at Mountain Island Charter

(Saturday, April 20)
Cramer at Kell

(Monday, April 22)
Cramer at Ashbrook
Corvian at Highland Tech
East Lincoln at East Rutherford
Forestview at East Gaston
Gaston Christian at Metrolina
Mountain Island Charter at Union Academy
North Hills Christian at Piedmont Community Charter
Spartanburg Day at Gaston Day

(Tuesday, April 23)
Crest at North Gaston
Huss at at Forestview
Kings Mountain at South Point
Burns at Shelby
Cherryville at Bessemer City
Thomas Jefferson at Highland Tech
Piedmont Community Charter at Carolina International
East Lincoln at North Iredell
Hickory at North Lincoln
East Burke at West Lincoln
Lincolnton at Maiden
Gaston Christian at Concord Academy
Bradford Prep at Mountain Island Charter
Christ the King at Lincoln Charter

(Wednesday, April 24)
Thomas Jefferson at Bessemer City
Cramer at East Gaston
Draughn at Burns
Maiden at North Gaston

(Thursday, April 25)
Ashbrook at Cramer
Gaston Day at Gaston Christian
Cherryville at East Burke
Pinnacle at Piedmont Community Charter

(Friday, April 26)
Forestview at Huss
North Gaston at Crest
South Point at Kings Mountain
Bessemer City at Cherryville
Highland Tech at Thomas Jefferson
Shelby at Burns
Foard at East Lincoln
Statesville at North Lincoln
Lincolnton at West Lincoln
Lincoln Charter at Christ the King
Mountain Island Charter at Bradford Prep
Gaston Day at Statesville Christian

(Monday, April 29)
Southern Piedmont 1A/2A Conference tournament
Western Foothills 3A Conference tournament
Catawba Valley 2A Conference tournament
Metro 1A Conference tournament
Catawba Shores 1A/2A Conference tournament

(Tuesday, April 30)
Ashbrook at Huss
Crest at Kings Mountain
Forestview at Cramer
North Gaston at South Point
East Lincoln at Hickory
North Lincoln at West Iredell

(Thursday, May 2)
North Lincoln at North Iredell
West Iredell at East Lincoln

(Friday, May 3)
Cramer at Forestview
Huss at Ashbrook
Kings Mountain at Crest
South Point at North Gaston










High school softball

(Tuesday, April 16)
East Lincoln 9, St Stephens 3: Winning pitcher Jordyn Aungst (5 hitter, 8 strikeouts, single, run, reached on error), reliever Madison Currence (1 inning), Taniyah Thomas (2 singles, 2 runs, 2 RBIs, stolen base), Tatum Martin (single, 2 runs, 2 walks), Lauren Bochardt (single, 2 runs, walk) and Autumn Keziah (2 singles, 2 runs, 2 stolen bases, reached on error) led East Lincoln.

Crest 10, Forestview 0 (5 innings): Winning pitcher Aidan Ledbetter (1-hitter, 10 strikeouts, solo home run), Madison Emery (2 RBIs), Hayden Lail (3-run home run), Maddie Bowen (2-run double), Sage McCurry (RBI single) and Piper Nicholson (RBI double) led Crest.

(Wednesday, April 17)
Cherryville 13, Piedmont Community Charter 3: Winning pitcher Laila Davis (3 hits, 5 RBIs), Landyn McBride (4 hits, 2 RBIs), Emma Proctor (2 hits, 1 RBI), Lexi McSwain (1 hit), Ava Miller (1 hit), Kate Mulvey (1 hit) and Maddie Avery (1 hit) led Cherryville.

Burns 14, Lincolnton 9: Winning pitcher Emma Walker (2 hits, double, RBI), Laylah Haynes (2 hits, 3 stolen bases, 3 RBIs), Esynce Howze (2 double, 1 RBI) and Karlye Clay (2 hits, 1 stolen base, 1 RBI) led Burns and B. Johnson (3 hits, 2 RBIs), B. Hollar (2 hits, double, 1 RBI) and K. Parker (2 doubles, 3 RBIs) led Lincolnton.







Pro soccer

Here is the Charlotte FC 2024 schedule:

(3-3-2 record)
Saturday, Feb 24, New York (W 1-0)
Saturday, Mar 2, at Vancouver (T 1-1)
Saturday, Mar 9, at Toronto (L 0-1)
Saturday, Mar 16, at Nashville (L 1-2)
Saturday, Mar 23, Columbus (W 2-0)
Saturday, Mar 30, Cincinnati (T 1-1)
Saturday, Apr 6, at New England (L 0-1)
Saturday, Apr 13, Toronto (W 3-2)
Sunday, Apr 21, Minnesota, 6 PM
Saturday, Apr 27, at New York, 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 4, Portland, 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 11, Nashville, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, May 15, at Chicago, 8:30 PM
Saturday, May 18, LA Galaxy, 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 25, Philadelphia, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, May 29, at New York Redbulls, 7:30 PM
Sunday, Jun 2, at Atlanta, 4:30 PM
Saturday, Jun 15, DC, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, Jun 19, Orlando, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Jun 22, at Philadelphia, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Jun 29, at Houston, 8:30 PM
Wednesday, Jul 3, Miami, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Jul 13, at Cincinnati, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, Jul 17, at Columbus, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Jul 20, at Austin, 8:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 24, New York Redbulls, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 31, Atlanta, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Sep 14, at Montreal, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, Sep 18, at Orlando, 8 PM
Saturday, Sep 21, New England, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Sep 28, at Miami, 7:30 PM
Wednesday, Oct 2, Chicago, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Oct 5, Montreal, 7:30 PM
Saturday, Oct 19, at DC, 6 PM











College baseball

Here are the ACC standings through April 14:

Clemson 11-4
Florida State 10-5
N.C. State 10-8
Wake Forest 9-9
Louisville 7-8
Boston College 7-11
Notre Dame 2-16
North Carolina 14-4
Duke 11-7
Virginia 11-7
Virginia Tech 11-7
Georgia Tech 7-8
Miami 6-12
Pittsburgh 4-14

(April 19-21)
Boston College at Notre Dame
Duke at Virginia Tech
Florida State at Wake Forest
Georgia Tech at Virginia
Louisville at Miami
North Carolina at N.C. State
Pittsburgh at Clemson

(April 26-28)
Clemson at Louisville
Florida State at Duke
Miami at Georgia Tech
Virginia at Boston College
Virginia Tech at North Carolina
Wake Forest at Notre Dame
Off – N.C. State, Pittsburgh








Pro baseball

Here is the full Gastonia Baseball Club’s 2024 schedule:

25 So. Maryland
26 So. Maryland
27 So. Maryland
28 So. Maryland
29 York
30 York

3 at Charleston, W.Va.
4 at Charleston, W.Va.
5 at Charleston, W.Va.
7 at Hagerstown
8 at Hagerstown
9 at Hagerstown
10 at York
11 at York
12 at York
14 Charleston, W.Va.
15 Charleston, W.Va.
16 Charleston, W.Va.
17 Lexington
18 Lexington
19 Lexington
21 at Lancaster
22 at Lancaster
23 at Lancaster
24 So. Maryland
25 So. Maryland
26 So. Maryland
27 So. Maryland
28 at Long Island
29 at Long Island
30 at Long Island
31 at Staten Island

1 at Staten Island
2 at Staten Island
4 Staten Island
5 Staten Island
6 Staten Island
7 Long Island
8 Long Island
9 Long Island
11 at Lexington
12 at Lexington
13 at Lexington
14 at Lexington
15 at Lexington
16 at Lexington
18 High Point
19 High Point
20 High Point
21 at Charleston, W.Va.
22 at Charleston, W.Va.
23 at Charleston, W.Va.
25 High Point
26 High Point
27 High Point
28 at Lexington
29 at Lexington
30 at Lexington

2 at High Point
3 at High Point
4 at High Point
5 Lexington
6 Lexington
7 Lexington
9 at Charleston, W.Va.
10 at Charleston, W.Va.
11 at Charleston, W.Va.
12 at Lexington
13 at Lexington
14 at Lexington
16 So. Maryland
17 So. Maryland
18 So. Maryland
19 at Charleston, W.Va.
20 at Charleston, W.Va.
21 at Charleston, W.Va.
23 at High Point
24 at High Point
25 at High Point
26 Charleston, W.Va.
27 Charleston, W.Va.
28 Charleston, W.Va.
30 at High Point
31 at High Point

1 at High Point
2 Lexington
3 Lexington
4 Lexington
6 High Point
7 High Point
8 High Point
9 at So. Maryland
10 at So. Maryland
11 at So. Maryland
13 at High Point
14 at High Point
15 at High Point
16 Lexington
17 Lexington
18 Lexington
20 at High Point
21 at High Point
22 at High Point
23 Lexington
24 Lexington
25 Lexington
27 High Point
28 High Point
29 High Point
30 Hagerstown
31 Hagerstown

1 Hagerstown
2 Hagerstown
3 at So. Maryland
4 at So. Maryland
5 at So. Maryland
6 at So. Maryland
7 at So. Maryland
8 at So. Maryland
10 Charleston, W.Va.
11 Charleston, W.Va.
12 Charleston, W.Va.
13 Charleston, W.Va.
14 Charleston, W.Va.
15 Charleston, W.Va.

Charlotte 4, Syracuse 2: For the 2nd straight day, Danny Mendick and Oscar Colás hit home runs for the Knights – and this time it led to victory in the 2nd game of a 6-game home series. Colas’ 2-run home run snapped a 2-all tie in the 7th. The 3rd game of the series is Thursday at 7:04 p.m.

Here is the Charlotte Knights 2024 schedule:

Record (6-11)
March 29-31 at Memphis (1-2 – L 5-6, L 3-10, W 6-2)
April 2-7 Norfolk (1-5 – L 6-10, L 11-26, L 8-9, L 10-11 in 10, L 1-13, W 6-2)
April 9-14 at Jacksonville (3-3 – L 1-4, L 1-2, W 6-2, L 5-7, W 11-2, W 9-4)
April 16-21 Syracuse (1-1 – L 2-9, W 4-2)
April 23-28 at Lehigh Valley
April 30-May 5 Memphis
May 7-12 at Gwinnett
May 14-19 Durham
May 21-26 at Nashville
May 28-June 2 Worcester
June 4-9 Jacksonville
June 11-16 at Durham
June 18-23 Gwinnett
June 25-30 at Norfolk
July 1-3 at Jacksonville
July 4-6 Jacksonville
July 9-14 Durham
July 19-21 at Gwinnett
July 23-28 at Nashville
July 30-Aug. 4 Norfolk
Aug. 6-11 at Louisville
Aug. 13-18 Toledo
Aug. 20-25 at Memphis
Aug. 27-Sept. 1 Nashville
Sept. 3-8 at Norfolk
Sept. 10-15 Jacksonville
Sept. 17-22 at Syracuse









Middle school baseball

Gaston County Conference standings (thru April 17):
Belmont 8-0
Stanley 8-0
Chavis 6-1
Mount Holly 4-2
W.C. Friday 4-3
Cramerton 3-3
Holbrook 2-5
Bessemer City 1-5
Southwest 1-5
York Chester 1-7
Grier 0-7

(Wednesday, Apr. 17:)
York Chester 16, Grier 1

Belmont 11, W.C. Friday 1: Luke Brown and Jackson Bradley combined on the no hitter with 8 strikeouts for Belmont, whose offense was led by Jacob Somers (3 hits), Caleb Simmons (2 hits), Wilson London (2 hits), Brayden Kelly (2 hits) and Brayden Walden (2 hits).

(Thursday, Apr. 18:)
Bessemer City at York Chester, Chavis at Stanley, Cramerton at Southwest, W.C. Friday at Mount Holly, Grier at Holbrook, BYE – Belmont

(Friday, Apr. 19:)
Mount Holly at Southwest






Middle school girls soccer

Gaston County Conference standings (thru April 17):
Belmont 8-0
Cramerton 5-1
Holbrook 5-1
Bessemer City 4-2
Mount Holly 4-2
Stanley 4-4
Chavis 3-3
W.C. Friday 2-5
Grier 2-5
Southwest 0-6
York Chester 0-8

(Wednesday, Apr. 17:)
Grier 2, York Chester 1

Belmont 9, W.C. Friday 0: Alice Bass had 4 goals for Belmont.

(Thursday, Apr. 18:)
Bessemer City at York Chester, Chavis at Stanley, Cramerton at Southwest, W.C. Friday at Mount Holly, Grier at Holbrook, BYE – Belmont

(Friday, Apr. 19:)
Mount Holly at Southwest








Middle school track

(Wednesday, April 17)

Boys- Belmont 59, Cramerton 51, York Chester 16

Girls- Belmont 80, Cramerton 38, York Chester 8







Auto racing

Here is the 2024 NASCAR schedule with date, race and site and winners in parentheses:

Sat. Feb. 3 Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum, LA Memorial Coliseum (Danny Hamlin)
Thu. Feb. 15 Bluegreen Vacations Duel 1 at Daytona, Daytona Intl Speedway (Tyler Redick)
Thu. Feb. 15 Bluegreen Vacations Duel 2 at Daytona, Daytona Intl Speedway (Christopher Bell)
Mon. Feb. 19 Daytona 500, Daytona International Speedway (William Byron)
Sun. Feb. 25 Ambetter Health 400, Atlanta Motor Speedway (Daniel Suarez)
Sun. Mar. 3 Pennzoil 400, Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Kyle Larson)
Sun. Mar. 10 Shriners Children’s 500, Phoenix Raceway (Bell-2)
Sun. Mar. 17 Food City 500, Bristol Motor Speedway (Hamlin-2)
Sun. Mar. 24 EchoPark Automotive Grand Prix, Circuit of the Americas (Byron-2)
Sun. Mar. 31 Toyota Owners 400, Richmond Raceway (Hamlin-3)
Sun. Apr. 7 Cook Out 400, Martinsville Speedway (Byron-3)
Sun. Apr. 14 AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400, Texas Motor Speedway (Chase Elliott)
Sun. Apr. 21 GEICO 500, Talladega Superspeedway 3 p.m. Fox/MRN
Sun. Apr. 28 Wurth 400, Dover Motor Speedway 2 p.m. FS1/PRN
Sun. May 5 AdventHealth 400, Kansas Speedway 3 p.m. FS1/MRN
Sun. May 12 Goodyear 400, Darlington Raceway 3 p.m. FS1/MRN
Sun. May 19 NASCAR All-Star Open, North Wilkesboro Speedway 8 p.m. FS1/MRN
Sun. May 19 NASCAR All-Star Race, North Wilkesboro Speedway 8 p.m. FS1/MRN
Sun. May 26 Coca-Cola 600, Charlotte Motor Speedway 6 p.m. Fox/PRN
Sun. June 2 Enjoy Illinois 300, World Wide Technology Raceway 3:30 p.m.FS1/MRN
Sun. June 9 Toyota/Save Mart 350, Sonoma Raceway 3:30 p.m.Fox/PRN
Sun. June 16 Iowa Corn 350, Iowa Speedway 7 p.m. USA/MRN
Sun. June 23 Cup Series race at New Hampshire, New Hampshire Motor Speedway 2:30 p.m.USA/PRN
Sun. June 30 Ally 400, Nashville Superspeedway 3:30 p.m.NBC/PRN
Sun. July 7 Grant Park 165, Chicago Street Course 4:30 p.m.NBC/MRN
Sun. July 14 Cup Series Race at Pocono, Pocono Raceway 2:30 p.m.USA/MRN
Sun. July 21 Brickyard 400, Indianapolis Motor Speedway 2:30 p.m.NBC/IMS
Sun. Aug. 11 Cook Out 400, Richmond Raceway 6 p.m. USA/MRN
Sun. Aug. 18 FireKeepers Casino 400, Michigan International Raceway 2:30 p.m.USA/MRN
Sat. Aug. 24 Coke Zero Sugar 400, Daytona International Speedway 7:30 p.m.NBC/MRN
Sun. Sept. 1 Cook Out Southern 500, Darlington Raceway 6 p.m. USA/MRN
(NASCAR playoff race schedule 2024)
Sun. Sept. 8 Quaker State 400, Atlanta Motor Speedway 3 p.m. USA/PRN
Sun. Sept. 15 Go Bowling at the Glen, Watkins Glen International 3 p.m. USA/MRN
Sat. Sept. 21 Bass Pro Shops Night Race, Bristol Motor Speedway 7:30 p.m.USA/PRN
Sun. Sept. 29 Hollywood Casino 400, Kansas Speedway 3 p.m. USA/PRN
Sun. Oct. 6 YellaWood 500, Talladega Superspeedway 2 p.m. NBC/MRN
Sun. Oct. 13 Bank of America Roval 400, Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course 2 p.m. NBC/PRN
Sun. Oct. 20 South Point 400, Las Vegas Motor Speedway 2:30 p.m.NBC/PRN
Sun. Oct. 27 Cup Series race at Homestead-Miami, Homestead-Miami Speedway 2:30 p.m.NBC/MRN
Sun. Nov. 3 XFINITY 500, Martinsville Speedway 2 p.m. NBC/MRN
Sun. Nov. 10 NASCAR Cup Series Championship, Phoenix Raceway 3 p.m. NBC/MRN