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6-10-22 roundup: Pro basketball, football, baseball and soccer, Legion baseball, College baseball

By Richard Walker Former Crest standout C.J. Mayhue and former Lincolnton standout Lane Hoover shined on Friday as East Carolina took the opener of a best-of-three series over Texas 13-7 in front of a Clark-LeClair Stadium record crowd of 5,723. Mayhue, a 2019 Crest High graduate, started and went five innings with nine strikeouts for […]

6-7-22 roundup: Pro football, basketball, baseball and soccer, High school football, softball and girls soccer, Legion baseball, College baseball and women’s lacrosse, Hall of Fame

By Richard Walker An East Gaston High player and a pitcher and coach that helped Burns to the league title top the Southern Piedmont 1A/2A Conference’s top softball honors in voting by league coaches for the 2022 season. East Gaston’s Maddison York was named player of the year and league champion Burns was selected for […]

6-2-22 roundup: Pro basketball, baseball, soccer and football, High school baseball, softball and track, Legion baseball

By Richard Walker It’s “Back to the Future” for Kings Mountain High baseball fans as the star of that school’s 1989 state championship team, Paul Brannon, has had his state home run record tied during the 2022 state playoffs. The person who tied his record? His son Brooks Brannon, a senior catcher at Randleman who […]

5-19-22 roundup: Pro basketball, football, baseball, soccer and hockey, High school baseball, softball and girls soccer, College golf

By Richard Walker Kings Mountain High’s first conference title in 13 years led to the team getting top honors in the 2022 Big South Conference all-league selection, highlighted by player of the year Zane Brockman and coach of the year Brad Melton. Kings Mountain had three other all-league picks in Charlie Melton, Caleb Broome and […]

5-14-22 roundup: Pro baseball, basketball, football, soccer and hockey, High school baseball, softball and girls soccer, Legion baseball

By Richard Walker Ten area high schools will be in the N.C. High School Athletic Association girls soccer playoffs that begin with Monday’s first-round games. There are four league champions – South Point (19-0) of the Big South 3A, East Gaston (15-2-1) of the Southern Piedmont 1A/2A and East Lincoln (15-3-3) of the Western Foothills […]

5-13-22 roundup: Pro baseball, basketball, football, soccer and hockey, College football, High school baseball, softball and girls soccer, College softball, Middle school girls soccer, Legion baseball

By Richard Walker The coach who guided East Gaston to its winningest baseball season in school history announced his retirement after the Warriors’ 2022 season ended with a second round playoff loss at Randleman. Randy Sellers, who became East Gaston head coach in 2007, guided the Warriors to a 20-7 overall record this season to […]

5-12-22 roundup: Pro baseball, basketball, football, soccer and hockey, High school baseball, softball, tennis and girls soccer

By Richard Walker The Carolina Panthers’ 2022 schedule was released Thursday night and the team hosts four of its first five games, will play one nationally-televised game and closes the season on the road for six of the last 11 games. Carolina opens the 2022 season at home against the Cleveland Browns in a 1 […]

5-11-22 roundup: Pro baseball, basketball, football, soccer and hockey, High school basketball, baseball, softball and tennis, Middle school baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker Four local players were repeat selections for the HighSchoolOT.com’s all-state girls basketball teams for the 2021-22 season that were announced on Monday. Shelby’s Maraja Pass was named to the first team, Shelby’s Kate Hollifield and Kings Mountain’s Saniya Wilson to the second team and Bessemer City’s Janiya Adams to honorable mention. All […]

5-10-22 roundup: Pro baseball, basketball, soccer and hockey, High school basketball, baseball, softball, golf and tennis, College football, Middle school track, baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker The Gaston County Conference middle school track meet was held for the first time since 2019 on Tuesday – and Belmont’s boys and Holbrook’s girls came away as team championship at the Ashbrook High School track. Belmont won its first county title since 1992 and it marked the first time a Division […]

5-2-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball, soccer and hockey, High school baseball, softball and tennis, College baseball, Middle school baseball and girls soccer, Legion baseball

By Richard Walker Ten former N.C. high school standouts were drafted in last weekend’s NFL Draft and six others signed free agent contract after going undrafted. That includes six players from the Charlotte metro area, among them top N.C. pick Ikem Ekwonu of Charlotte Providence Day (1st round by Carolina Panthers) and former South Point […]

4-30-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball and soccer, High school tennis, Middle school baseball and girls soccer, Legion baseball

By Richard Walker Former South Point High standout Nick Muse became the fifth Gaston County product to be drafted by a NFL team. A 2017 South Point High graduate who played for William and Mary and South Carolina in college, Muse was selected in the seventh round with the 227th overall pick by the Minnesota […]

4-29-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball and soccer, High school baseball, softball and tennis, Middle school baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker Two league victories may not sound like much but for York Chester Middle School’s baseball program, it marks the best season in nearly 30 years. The Cougars, coached by Jason Huffstetler, improved to 2-6 on the season with Thursday’s 11-5 victory over Southwest. Shortstop Brandon Rice (2 hits), catcher Landon lafar (2 […]

4-28-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball and soccer, High school baseball and softball, College athletics, Middle school baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker The Carolina Panthers stayed at No. 6 overall in the 2022 NFL Draft and chose a local player. Carolina selected N.C. State offensive tackle Ikem Okwunu, who played high school football at Providence Day. Ekwonu is the first N.C. State player drafted by the Panthers in their history. Carolina has five more […]

4-27-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball and soccer, High school baseball and softball, College baseball, Middle school baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker Four local products have helped Wingate to a No. 1 NCAA Division II national baseball ranking, a top seed in the upcoming South Atlantic Conference tournament and a 40-win season – 2017 Crest High graduate Logan McNeely, 2018 North Gaston High graduate Austin Mitchell, 2020 Cherryville High graduate Brent Walls and 2021 […]

4-26-22 roundup: Pro football, baseball, basketball and soccer, High school baseball, softball and tennis, College baseball, Middle school baseball and girls soccer

By Richard Walker HighSchoolOT.com named its second all-state boys basketball team and five players from Cleveland, Gaston and Lincoln counties were honored. Here’s the full team with statistics and upcoming college destinations if available: Players are listed with their averages in the following format: points/rebounds/assists. And if a player notched more than 1.5 steals or […]

4-19-22 roundup: Pro football, basketball and soccer, High school baseball and softball, College baseball

By Richard Walker A “Back to the Future” championship game will be held on Thursday when the Gaston County Baseball Championship game is played at Gastonia’s Sims Legion Park. It’s because East Gaston will face North Gaston in the 2022 championship game; Those two schools will be meeting for the title for the first time […]

GCSHOF 2022: Gastonia’s Claude Saunders excelled as athlete, administrator and official

By Richard Walker When the late Claude “Doc” Saunders grew up in Gastonia in the 1940s and 1950s, segregation was the law and common practice of the land in the region. Saunders, a star basketball and baseball player at Gastonia’s all African-American Highland High School, used athletics as a way to survive and thrive in […]

3-25-22 roundup: Pro basketball and soccer, College basketball and softball, High school baseball, softball and track, College football

By Richard Walker To call the current NFL offseason a rollercoaster would be an understatement. For the Carolina Panthers, that’s been unmistakably true as head coach Matt Rhule and general manager Scott Fitterer have tried to reshape a roster that ended last season 5-12 to complete a franchise-worst fourth straight losing season. This offseason, Carolina […]

2-14-22 roundup: High school swimming/diving and basketball, Pro basketball and football, Middle school basketball

By Richard Walker Lincoln Charter held off league rival Pine Lake Prep to win the school’s first N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 1A/2A girls swimming and diving state championship in Cary on Saturday. The Eagles won their title thanks to a 200 Freestyle victory from Grace Wilson who churned to a 1:57.03 win. She […]

2-10-22 roundup: Pro basketball and football, College basketball, High school basketball, Middle school basketball

By Richard Walker Five area high school basketball titles have been clinched while three others remain in contention entering Friday’s regular season finales. Crest’s boys, Shelby’s girls, East Lincoln’s girls and boys and girls teams From Lincoln Charter have wrapped their respective races. Meanwhile, Bessemer City’s boys clinched at least a share of the Southern […]

2-9-22 roundup: Pro basketball and football, College basketball and baseball, High school basketball, Middle school basketball

By Richard Walker Bessemer City High School’s boys basketball team enters Thursday’s home game with East Gaston seeking a historic title. The Yellow Jackets of coach Danny McDowell would clinch a least a share of the school’s first regular season boys basketball title since 1996 – and 10th in history. Monday’s 67-65 victory over preseason […]

Gaston County Sports Hall of Fame announces 2022 class

By Richard Walker The Gaston County Sports Hall of Fame has selected five new inductees for its 2022 class that will be honored May 2 at the Gastonia Conference Center. Former University of North Carolina player and administrator John Swofford will be the featured speaker. The induction class is comprised of Cherryville’s Stan Crisson, Cramerton’s […]

1-19-22 roundup: College basketball and football, High school basketball, Pro basketball, football and soccer

By Richard Walker A Gastonia native, an original Charlotte Hornets player and an original Carolina Panthers player highlight a group of 11 that will be honored during the 2022 induction ceremonies for the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame. Gastonia’s Dave Robbins, a two-sport star at old Ashley High School, is being inducted for leading […]

1-10-22 roundup: High school basketball, Legion baseball, Pro football, basketball and soccer, College football and volleyball

By Richard Walker Cramer High’s boys basketball team has moved into historic territory during the Storm’s 11-0 start to the season entering Tuesday’s Big South 3A Conference game at Kings Mountain. Coach Brad Sloan’s team is off to the 11th boys basketball start of 10-0 or better in Gaston County in the last 40 years. […]

Wrapping up Carolina Panthers 2021-22: From 3-0 to a disappointing 5-12

By Richard Walker The Carolina Panthers 2021-22 season started fast but ended in disappointment. After starting 3-0 with new quarterback Sam Darnold, the Panthers lost 12 of their last 14 games and will enter the offseason with more questions than answers. What’s next for a franchise that will enter next season looking to snap a […]

1-9-22 roundup: Legion baseball, High school basketball, Pro football, basketball and baseball, College football

By Richard Walker The North Carolina American Legion Baseball Hall of Fame ceremony is returning to Cherryville. The 2022 ceremony inducting the 2021 class will be held on Saturday, March 5 at 6:30 p.m. at the Cherryville Post 100 Legion hut. Tickets are $10. Call Jerry Hudson (704-460-4855), Tony Robinson (980-329-7200), Mike Robinson (704-473-9310), Ned […]

1-8-22 roundup: High school basketball and wrestling, Pro football and basketball, College basketball and football

By Richard Walker Friday night was milestone night for local high school basketball as a pair of Bessemer City High juniors surpassed 1,000 career points and a Lincoln Charter coach reached a victory milestone. Bessemer City’s Janiya Adams and Randall Pettus surpassed 1,000 career points as Bessemer City swept rival Cherryville with a 75-29 girls […]

1-7-22 roundup: High school basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football

By Richard Walker Cramer High’s fast start continued Friday as the Storm boys basketball team won 84-58 over visiting Ashbrook to improve to 11-0 overall. It’s the fastest start in the school’s nine-year history and comes after the Storm started 0-10 last season before finishing 1-13. This season’s start marks only the fourth time Cramer […]

1-6-22 roundup: High school basketball and football, Pro football, basketball and soccer, College football and basketball

By Richard Walker When Kings Mountain returns to action on Friday in a Big South 3A Conference home game against South Point, the Mountaineers will be playing the first game since senior guard Zeke Cannedy tied a 67-year record. Cannedy tied a Cleveland County record set in 1954 with 55 points in Kings Mountain’s 83-74 […]

1-5-22 roundup: College basketball and football, Pro basketball and football, High school basketball and wrestling

By Richard Walker Coming off its largest win over a power five conference opponent in its last game, Gardner-Webb used that momentum to open its Big South Conference schedule with an 88-63 win at Charleston Southern on Wednesday. The Runnin’ Bulldogs improved to 7-7 overall in their first game since a 77-60 win at Georgia […]

1-4-22 roundup: Legion baseball, High school basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football and basketball

By Richard Walker The return of the North Carolina/South Carolina Challenge of American Legion baseball teams has tweaked its upcoming 2022 lineup with a new team. Rutherford County Post 423 will now join host Cherryville Post 100 and Fuquay-Varina Post 116 as N.C. teams for the June 24-26 event that will be played at Cherryville’s […]

1-3-22 roundup: Pro football and basketball, College football and basketball, High school basketball

By Richard Walker A 14-point lead in the middle of the third quarter wasn’t enough for the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night in a 124-121 loss at the Washington Wizards. Charlotte, which fell to 19-19 overall, led 82-68 with 5:17 left in the third quarter before Washington rallied by Kyle Kuzma’s game-high 36 points. Gordon […]

1-2-22 roundup: Pro football and basketball, College football, High school basketball

By Richard Walker Charlotte had a tough professional sports start to the new year as the NFL Carolina Panthers and the NBA Charlotte Hornets both suffered disappointing losses on Sunday. In the 54th day the teams have played on the same day, Charlotte teams were swept for the 23rd time – and third time this […]

1-1-22 roundup: College football, Pro basketball and football, High school basketball

By Richard Walker DeaconsIllustrated, a website devoted to Wake Forest University athletics, made the case in a story posted Saturday morning that Clover’s Nick Sciba became the NCAA’s most accurate kicker in history this season based on that organization’s record book. Sciba, a 2018 Clover graduate, finished his four-year Wake Forest career with 80 field […]

12-31-21 roundup: Pro basketball and football, College football, High school basketball

By Richard Walker One of the greatest legends in basketball has died as Sam Jones passed on Thursday evening at 88. Jones played his entire 12-year NBA career with the Boston Celtics and won 10 titles between 1957-69. Jones, Bill Russell and K.C. Jones were the only three players to be a part of Boston […]

12-30-21 roundup: High school basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football

By Richard Walker Cramer won a second straight People’s Bank Classic boys basketball title and Gaston Day knocked off host Kings Mountain in the Mountaineers Classic boys tournament championship game to highlight a huge Thursday night of high school basketball. At the 18th People’s Bank Classic at Lincolnton High School, Cramer edged host Lincolnton 67-62 […]

12-29-21 roundup: High school basketball and baseball, Pro football and basketball, College football and basketball

By Richard Walker Championship games will be held at Lincolnton, East Lincoln and Kings Mountain involving high school basketball teams from Cleveland, Gaston and Lincoln counties. In the People’s Bank Holiday Classic at Lincolnton High School, defending champion Cramer meets host Lincolnton for the boys championship and two-time defending champion Bandys meets West Lincoln for […]

12-28-21 roundup: High school basketball, Pro football, basketball and soccer, College football

By Richard Walker Cherryville’s boys and South Point’s girls won championship games Tuesday night in the Bud Black/Dennis Tate Classic at Cherryville’s Nixon Gymnasium. Cherryville downed Thomas Jefferson 73-62 to give the Ironmen their 12th title in the history of the tournament that dates to 1981. Tournament MVP Carson Kelly (33 points) and all-tournament members […]

12-27-21 roundup: High school basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football

By Richard Walker Thomas Jefferson and Cherryville will meet for the second straight time in the Bud Black/Dennis Tate Holiday Classic boys championship game on Tuesday after each won opening round games on Monday. Thomas Jefferson won 74-65 in 2019 in the last tournament title game – there was no holiday tournament in 2020 due […]

12-26-21 roundup: Pro football and basketball, College football, High school basketball

By Richard Walker The Cam Newton era at Bank of America Stadium may well have ended Sunday – and it ended in a 32-6 loss to the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Newton started Sunday’s game, a 136th start in Panthers’ history, before he was replaced in the second quarter by Sam Darnold […]

12-25-21 roundup: Pro football and basketball, College football, High school basketball

By Richard Walker As we enter Week 16 of the NFL season, here’s an update on the area’s three local pro football players: For the Atlanta Falcons, defensive lineman Jonathan Bullard (Crest 2012 graduate) has 18 tackles in eight games (four starts) but has been inactive for the last four games. Atlanta (6-8) hosts Detroit […]

12-24-21 roundup: College football, High school basketball, Pro football and basketball

By Richard Walker If Sunday’s 1 p.m. game is Cam Newton’s last start at quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, there’s little that will change the notion many observers have that Newton is the greatest to ever play for the franchise. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2011 draft out of Auburn, Newton holds franchise […]

12-23-21 roundup: College football, High school basketball, Pro football and basketball

By Richard Walker Clover’s Nick Sciba has been invited to a prestigious All-Star that could lead to a career in the NFL. A 2018 Clover High graduate, Sciba will play in the 10th annual NFLPA Collegiate Bowl on Jan. 29 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Cal. A 2021 All-ACC kicker, Sciba enters Wake Forest’s […]

12-22-21 roundup: High school basketball, College football and basketball, Pro football and basketball

By Richard Walker Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule announced his starting quarterback for Sunday’s regular season game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers but added he would use two quarterbacks in the game. Cam Newton will get the start at quarterback and Sam Darnold is expected to see some playing time after missing the last […]

12-21-21 roundup: High school basketball, College football and basketball, Pro football and basketball

By Richard Walker A championship-winning coach at Kings Mountain and North Gaston high schools died in a car crash in Duncan, S.C. on Tuesday evening. Bruce Clark, who guided Kings Mountain to two state baseball titles and led North Gaston to its only state football championship, was pronounced dead at the scene of a crash. […]

12-20-21 roundup: College football and basketball, Pro football and basketball, High school basketball

By Richard Walker Former North Lincoln High standout Travali Price made the most of his redshirt freshman season at N.C. State. Price, a 6-foot-4, 260-pound defensive end, was named the Wolfpack’s Defensive scout team player of the year. A 2021 North Lincoln High graduate, Price was a two-time all-conference player for the Knights and helped […]

12-19-21 roundup: Pro football and basketball, High school basketball, College football and baseball

By Richard Walker A pregame injury to kicker Zane Gonzalez proved a bad omen for the Carolina Panthers in a 31-14 loss at the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. It was Carolina’s fourth straight loss, drops the team to 5-9 overall this season to guarantee a fourth straight losing record and quarterback Cam Newton lost his […]

12-18-21 roundup: High school football and basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football, basketball and baseball

By Richard Walker Record-setting performers from Shelby, South Point, Burns, Mountain Island Charter, Crest and East Gaston are the top high school football statistical leaders in Cleveland, Gaston and Lincoln counties for the 2021 season. Shelby’s Daylin Lee was the leading passer with 3,837 yards, South Point’s Tyson Riley the leading rusher with 2,485 yards, […]

12-17-21 roundup: Pro football, basketball and soccer, College football, women’s soccer and softball, High school basketball, Middle school volleyball

By Richard Walker Wake Forest’s Isaiah Mucius hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer for an 82-79 Deacons’ victory over the Charlotte 49ers on Friday to cap the inaugural Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout at Charlotte’s Spectrum Center. The Deacons (11-1) had led by as many as 19 points before Charlotte (5-5) rallied to tie the […]

12-16-21 roundup: Pro football and basketball, College football, High school basketball, Middle school volleyball

By Richard Walker Earlier this week, a former Shelby High standout added to area football history when Demerio Houston was on the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ roster when they won the 108th Grey Cup championship for the Canadian Football League on Sunday. The Blue Bombers knocked off the host Hamilton Tiger-Cats 33-25 as former Cincinnati Bearcats […]

12-15-21 roundup: College football and basketball, High school basketball, Pro football and basketball and soccer, Middle school volleyball and wrestling

By Richard Walker Three major college recruits from Cleveland County highlighted Wednesday’s national signing day as Crest’s Eli Hall signed with Wake Forest and Shelby’s Malaki Hamrick signed with North Carolina and Santana Hopper with Appalachian State. Additionally, Charlotte and Gardner-Webb added several players to their respective programs. At Charlotte, coach Will Healy signed 12 […]

12-14-21 roundup: College football, Track Hall of Fame, High school basketball, Pro football, basketball and soccer, College football

By Richard Walker Crest High’s Mari Adams announced on twitter on Tuesday that he would be playing football locally by committing to Davidson College. A running back who set Crest’s school record for single-season rushing yards and was named Big South 3A Conference offensive player of the year, Adams said this on twitter about his […]

12-13-21 roundup: High school football, basketball and soccer, Pro football and basketball, College football and basketball, Middle school volleyball

By Richard Walker State champion Shelby leads the All-Southern Piedmont 1A/2A Conference football team that was released on Monday. In voting done by league coaches, Shelby’s Mike Wilbanks was named coach of the year, Malaki Hamrick was named defensive player of the year and Jack Berkowitz was named kicker of the year. Shelby recently completed […]

12-12-21 roundup: High school basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football, basketball and soccer, Middle school wrestling

By Richard Walker With Shelby’s N.C. 2A championship game on Saturday, local high schools can now focus on high school basketball which has been underway for a month for some teams. League play in the Big South 3A and Western Foothills 3A conferences began on Friday. With that in mind, here’s preseason projections for the […]

12-11-21 roundup: High school football and basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football and basketball, Middle school wrestling

By Richard Walker In an offensive shootout against North Carolina’s most prolific high school rushing attack in history, Shelby downed Wallace-Rose Hill 55-34 to win the 2021 N.C. 2A title at N.C. State’s Carter-Finley Stadium on Saturday. It was Shelby’s 19th state in school history – and seventh championship in nine years. Even after falling […]

12-10-21 roundup: Pro basketball and football, Middle school volleyball, High school football and basketball, College football

By Richard Walker Despite being without seven players, the Charlotte Hornets edged the Sacramento Kings in a 124-123 shootout victory on Friday night at the Spectrum Center. The Hornets were without starting guards LaMelo Ball and Terry Rozier, starting center Mason Plumlee and reserves Jalen McDaniels and Ish Smith due to health and safety protocols […]

12-9-21 roundup: Middle school boys soccer and wrestling, Pro basketball, football and soccer, High school football, basketball and indoor track, College football and basketball

By Richard Walker Cramerton Middle School finished a 12-0 seasons as the Eagles’ boys soccer team won the Gaston County county title. Cramerton edged Belmont 1-0 for the second time in eight days – this time in the championship game – as Aiden VanderMeer scored the goal in the first half on a Brody Dyer […]

12-8-21 roundup: College football and baseball, High school football and basketball, Pro football and basketball, Middle school boys soccer, volleyball and wrestling

By Richard Walker Former Ashbrook High standout British Brooks will be returning for another season with the University of North Carolina, the school announced on Wednesday. A 2018 Ashbrook graduate, Brooks has gone from recruited walkon to special teams standout and offensive contributor for the Tar Heels. This season, Brooks rushed for 223 yards and […]

12-7-21 roundup: High school football, basketball and wrestling, Pro football and basketball, College football, Middle school boys soccer, volleyball and wrestling

By Richard Walker Cramerton will be hosting both the boys soccer and volleyball Gaston County Conference championship games on Thursday. Since both games are being played at Cramerton and a 3:30 p.m. school dismissal, all fans are encouraged to park at Life Church. The game time for boys soccer is 3:45 p.m. with volleyball slated […]

12-6-21 roundup: High school football and basketball, Pro football and basketball, College football, basketball and baseball, Middle school boys soccer, volleyball and wrestling

By Richard Walker Crest won three top awards and Cramer, Kings Mountain and South Point got one top honor apiece in All-Big South 3A Conference football honors that were announced on Monday. Crest’s Mari Adams (offensive player of the year), Eli Hall (defensive lineman of the year) and Nick Eddins (coach of the year) helped […]