9-27-21 roundup: College football, Pro football and baseball, High school football and boys soccer, Middle school football and softball

By Richard Walker

Local products came away with top league honors on Monday after having impressive efforts in Saturday college football games.

Chris Reynolds

At Charlotte, quarterback Chris Reynolds was named Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week.

At Gardner-Webb, two players were honored by the Big South Conference.

And at N.C. State and Wake Forest, local players were honored by the ACC.

Reynolds, who won the third league honor of his career and second of the season, completed 25 of 36 passes for 339 yards and accounted for five touchdowns in the 49ers’ 42-39 victory in their C-USA opener. With his four touchdown passes, Reynolds surpassed Matt Johnson as the school’s all-time leader in career passing TDs with 45; Johnson had 42.

Gardner-Webb linebacker William McRainey was named Defensive Player of the Week and Bulldogs running back Donovan Jones was named Freshman of the Week.

McRainey finished with a game-high 17 tackles (one for a loss), a pass break-up and forced a fumble in Gardner-Webb’s come-from-behind 52-34 home win over Western Carolina. Jones rushed for a career-high 102 yards and two touchdowns and his first touchdown put GWU ahead for good at 38-34 in the third quarter; The Bulldogs trailed 34-24 before scoring the game’s last 28 points.

Emeka Ekezie, a N.C. State wide receiver from Waxhaw, was named ACC Receiver of the Week after career-highs in receptions (14) and receiving yards (116) in the Wolfpack’s 27-21 double overtime win over Clemson. And Ekezie’s 22-yard first quarter touchdown reception was the first offensive touchdown scored on Clemson this season.

N.C. State had two other top honorees in Offensive Lineman of the Week Ikem Ekwonu and Quarterback of the Week Devin Leary.

Ekwonu, who played at Charlotte’s Providence Day, had a career-high 102 snaps, tallied eight pancake blocks and three knockdowns and posted the highest grade on the Wolfpack offensive line.

Leary, also named the Walter Camp FBS Offensive Player of the Week, completed 32 of 44 passes for 238 yards and four touchdowns, including two in overtime.

And for Wake Forest, former Clover High standout Nick Sciba was named ACC Co-Specialist of the Week. Sciba made three field goals without a miss to improve his consecutive made field goals to 19 in last Friday’s 37-17 win at Virginia. Sciba now owns a 90.1 career field goal percentage (64 of 71), which is highest in NCAA history.

Here’s the Carolinas Division I schedule for this week:

Donovan Jones

Charlotte at Illinois, noon
Duke at North Carolina, noon
Louisville at Wake Forest, 12:30 p.m.
Appalachian State at Georgia State, 1 p.m.
Davidson at Stetson, 1 p.m.
Gardner-Webb at Monmouth, 1 p.m.
Robert Morris at N.C. A&T, 1 p.m.
ULM at Coastal Carolina, 1:30 p.m.
Western Carolina at Chattanooga, 1:30 p.m.
Elon at Richmond, 2 p.m.
VMI at The Citadel, 2 p.m.
Troy at South Carolina, 3:30 p.m.
Tulane at East Carolina, 3:30 p.m.
Wofford at East Tennessee State, 3:30 p.m.
Louisiana Tech at N.C. State, 6 p.m.
Campbell at North Alabama, 7 p.m.
Boston College at Clemson, 7:30 p.m.

Here’s the Carolinas Division II schedule for this week:

Limestone at Catawba, 1 p.m.
Newberry at Mars Hill, 1 p.m.
Shaw at Virginia Union, 1 p.m.
UNC Pembroke at Frostburg State, 1 p.m.
Carson-Newman at Barton, 2 p.m.
J.C. Smith at Bowie State, 2 p.m.
Lenoir-Rhyne at Virginia-Wise, 2 p.m.
Virginia Lynchburg at Erskine, 2 p.m.
Livingstone at Elizabeth City State, 2:30 p.m.
Mississippi College at North Greenville, 3 p.m.
Tusculum at Wingate, 6 p.m.
Winston-Salem State at Chowan, 6 p.m.
St. Augustine’s at Virginia State, 6 p.m.
Lincoln, Pa. at Fayetteville State, 7 p.m.



Pro football

There was lots of news from the Carolina Panthers on Monday as the team made a trade, placed one player on injured reserve and updated the status of two other injured players.

After reportedly being linked to veteran All-Pro free agent defensive back Richard Sherman over the weekend, the Panthers acquired former first round cornerback C.J. Henderson and fifth-round pick in the 2022 draft from the Jacksonville Jaguars for tight end Dan Arnold and a third-round pick in the 2022 draft.

Henderson, the No. 9 overall pick in the 2020 draft out of Florida, made eight starts last season before a groin injury ended his season.

Henderson will be expected to lessen the loss of Panthers’ rookie cornerback Jaycee Horn, who had surgery on three broken bones in his foot and was placed on injured reserve by the Panthers on Monday.

The injury news was better for running back Christian McCaffrey (hamstring) and safety Juston Burris (groin) as neither was placed on injured reserve and both are expected to return to action in a few weeks.

Here is the Carolina Panthers’ 2021 schedule (with results):

Sept. 12 New York Jets (W 19-14)
Sept. 19 New Orleans (W 26-7)
Sept. 23 at Houston (W 24-9)
Oct. 3 at Dallas, 1 p.m.
Oct. 10 Philadelphia, 1 p.m.
Oct. 17 Minnesota, 1 p.m.
Oct. 24 at New York Giants, 1 p.m.
Oct. 31 at Atlanta, 1 p.m.
Nov. 7 New England, 1 p.m.
Nov. 14 at Arizona, 4:05 p.m.
Nov. 21 Washington, 1 p.m.
Nov. 28 at Miami, 1 p.m.
Dec. 12 Atlanta, 1 p.m.
Dec. 18 or 19 at Buffalo, TBD
Dec. 26 Tampa Bay, 1 p.m.
Jan. 2 at New Orleans, 1 p.m.
Jan. 9 at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m




Pro basketball

Charlotte Hornets President of Basketball Operations & General Manager Mitch Kupchak announced Monday the team had finalized its top basketball staff by hiring Marlon Garnett, Nick Friedman and Norman Richardson as assistant coaches under head coach James Borrego and promoting Jackson Simmons to Head Video Coordinator while naming Klint Carlson and Daniel Dixon as Assistant Video Coordinators.

“I am excited to add Marlon and Norman to our staff, who both bring high-level professional experience as players and coaches,” Hornets head coach James Borrego said in a team news release. “I’m also thrilled for Coach Friedman in his ascension to becoming an assistant coach on our staff after his work as a player development coach. We are looking forward to what they can bring to our group and are excited about what they will contribute to the development of our program here in Charlotte.”

Garnett and Simmons have strong local ties as Garnett was head coach at Monroe’s Union Academy in the 2014-15 season and Simmons played at Smoky Mountain High and the University of North Carolina, was a director of basketball operations at Western Carolina in the 2017-18 season and spent the past three seasons as Hornets’ Assistant Video Coordinator.




High school football

Here are standings through Sept. 24 with conference record listed first followed by overall record:

Crest 3-0, 3-1
Kings Mountain 2-0, 4-1
South Point 2-0, 4-1
Forestview 2-0, 3-2
Cramer 0-2, 2-3
Ashbrook 0-2, 0-3
Huss 0-2, 0-3
North Gaston 0-3, 0-6

Statesville 2-0, 4-0
North Iredell 2-0, 2-2
North Lincoln 1-1, 3-2
Hickory 1-1, 2-3
West Iredell 1-1, 1-2
St. Stephens 1-1, 1-3
East Lincoln 0-2, 3-2
Foard 0-2, 0-4

Bunker Hill 2-0, 5-0
Maiden 1-0, 4-0
West Lincoln 1-1, 4-1
Newton-Conover 1-1, 1-3
Lincolnton 1-1, 1-4
East Burke 0-0, 1-1
Bandys 0-1, 2-1
West Caldwell 0-2, 0-4

Shelby 2-0, 4-1
Burns 1-0, 3-2
East Gaston 1-0, 3-2
Thomas Jefferson 1-1, 3-1
Bessemer City 1-1, 2-4
Cherryville 0-2, 1-4
Highland Tech 0-2, 0-5

South Meck 1-0, 5-1
Olympic 1-0, 4-1
Myers Park 1-0, 4-2
Kell 0-0, 3-1
Harding 0-1, 2-4
Berry Academy 0-2, 1-3

Catholic 2-0, 4-1
Butler 2-0, 3-2
Rocky River 1-0, 2-3
East Meck 1-1, 1-5
Independence 0-1, 1-3
Providence 0-2, 1-4
Garinger 0-2, 0-5

Hough 2-0, 5-0
Mallard Creek 2-0, 3-1
Chambers 1-1, 5-1
West Charlotte 1-1, 4-1
North Meck 0-1, 2-2
Hopewell 0-1, 1-4
West Meck 0-2, 3-3

Chase 0-0, 5-0
Clover 0-0, 1-3
Mtn Island Charter 0-1, 3-1
R-S Central 1-1, 1-3

This week’s games:

Maiden at East Burke

Forestview at Kings Mountain
Huss at Cramer
North Gaston at Ashbrook
South Point at Crest
East Lincoln at West Iredell
North Lincoln at North Iredell
Bandys at Lincolnton
West Lincoln at Bunker Hill
Burns at Bessemer City
Patton at Cherryville
Shelby at Highland Tech
Thomas Jefferson at East Gaston
Winston-Salem Prep at Mountain Island Charter

Foard at Statesville
Hickory at St. Stephens
Newton-Conover at East Burke
West Caldwell at Maiden
West Charlotte at Hopewell
Hough at West Meck
Berry Academy at Harding
Kell at Myers Park
Butler at East Meck
Catholic at Rocky River
Independence at Garinger
Providence at Mooresville
Chase at Hendersonville
R-S Central at Polk County





High school boys soccer

Here are the standings through Sept. 27 with conference record listed first followed by overall record:

Cramer 5-0, 11-2
Forestview 5-0, 8-2-1
South Point 3-2, 7-5
Ashbrook 3-2, 4-3
North Gaston 1-3, 3-5-1
Huss 1-4, 4-4
Kings Mountain 1-4, 2-7
Crest 0-4, 0-8

Shelby 4-0, 9-1-1
Highland Tech 4-0, 6-2
Burns 3-2, 6-2-1
Thomas Jefferson 2-2, 2-4
East Gaston 2-3, 3-9
Cherryville 0-4, 1-6-1
Bessemer City 0-4, 1-7

Gaston Christian 2-2, 3-6
Gaston Day 3-0, 9-2
East Lincoln 4-1, 6-4
Lincoln Charter 0-1, 4-5-1
Lincolnton 4-0, 6-0-1
Mtn Island Charter 0-2, 3-5
North Lincoln 0-2, 4-5
Piedmont CC 2-0, 4-1
West Lincoln 0-5, 2-10

This week’s schedule:

Ashbrook 1, South Point 0

Shelby 7, Bessemer City 0

Thomas Jefferson 5, Cherryville 2

Cramer 9, Kings Mountain 0

Foard 6, East Lincoln 5 (OT)

Forestview 9, Crest 0: Isaac Leksrisawat and John Albright scored two goals each and Luke Hope, Parker Hope, Caden Phillips, Plamedi Warsinsky and Jaden Johnson scored one goal apiece for Forestview.

Highland Tech 4, East Gaston 3

Lincolnton at East Burke, no report

Mountain Island Charter at Lincoln Charter, no report

North Gaston 3, Huss 2

North Lincoln at St. Stephens, no report

West Caldwell 7, West Lincoln 0

Woodlawn at Gaston Christian, no report

Ashbrook at East Gaston
Highland Tech at Burns
Shelby at Cherryville
Statesville at North Lincoln
Thomas Jefferson at Bessemer City
Westminster Catawba at Gaston Day

Community School of Davidson at Lincoln Charter
Cramer at North Gaston
Crest at Huss
East Burke at West Lincoln
East Lincoln at St. Stephens
Foard at North Lincoln
Langtree Charter at Mountain Island Charter
Kings Mountain at Ashbrook
Maiden at Lincolnton
South Point at Forestview

Bessemer City at Cherryville
Crest at North Gaston
East Gaston at Thomas Jefferson
Gaston Day at SouthLake Christian
Shelby at Highland Tech






Middle school football

Gaston County Conference standings through Sept. 23 with division record listed first followed by overall record:

(Division I)
Holbrook 2-0, 4-0
Southwest 2-0, 4-0
Grier 1-1, 3-1
Cramerton 1-2, 3-2
Mount Holly 0-3, 0-4-1
(Division II)
York Chester 3-0, 3-1-1
Belmont 3-0, 3-2
W.C. Friday 1-1, 2-2
Stanley 1-2, 1-3
Bessemer City 1-2, 1-4
Chavis 0-3, 0-4

Wednesday’s games
Grier at Mount Holly
Holbrook at Southwest
Belmont at Chavis
Bessemer City at Stanley
W.C. Friday at York Chester

Tri-County Conference standings through Sept. 23 with division record listed first followed by overall record:

East Lincoln 2-0, 3-0
Kings Mountain 2-0, 2-1
North Lincoln 1-1, 2-1
Lincolnton 0-1, 1-1
West Lincoln 0-1, 0-2
Burns 0-2, 0-2
Shelby 2-0, 4-0
Crest 1-0, 1-1
East Rutherford 1-0, 1-1
Thomas Jefferson 1-1, 1-2
R-S Central 0-1, 1-1
Chase 0-2, 0-3

Wednesday’s games
East Rutherford at Shelby
Thomas Jefferson at R-S Central
Chase at Crest
Burns at Kings Mountain
North Lincoln at East Lincoln
West Lincoln at Lincolnton





Middle school softball

Gaston County Conference standings through Sept. 27:

Cramerton 7-0 (8-0 overall)
Chavis 6-1
Stanley 5-2
Mount Holly 6-3
Belmont 5-3
Holbrook 4-4
Bessemer City 2-5 (2-6 overall)
W.C. Friday 2-6
Grier 1-7
Southwest 0-7

Monday’s games
Belmont 21, Grier 5 (3 innings): Stella Absher threw a no-hitter with four strikeouts and Evy McKee, Nora Scarpalezo and Josie Patterson led the Belmont offense.

Bessemer City at W.C. Friday, no report

Cramerton 12, Chavis 5: Kayla Johnson struck out 12 and had two hits, Madison Bridges had a two-run home run and scored three runs, Cailey Evans had 2 hits, including a triple, and scored two runs and Taylyn Ledford, Katlyn Baker and Addeyson Payseur also contributed offensively for unbeaten Cramerton.

Stanley 18, Mount Holly 8: Raegan Lilja (4-4), Hannah Massey (3-3) and winning pitcher Madison Perrigo (two hits) led Stanley.

Wednesday’s game
Grier at Stanley

Thursday’s games
Cramerton at Belmont
Chavis at Bessemer City
Holbrook at Southwest











Pro baseball

Coming off a three-game home series sweep of Long Island, the Gastonia Honey Hunters were off Monday as they prepare to begin a three-game road trip at Lexington Tuesday through Thursday.

Gastonia is 49-59 on the season in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.