Sports Shorts for September 30

Wingate volleyball to play in Indian Trail

The Wingate University volleyball team will host a home match against Queen’s University of Charlotte on Sunday, Oct. 2, at Indian Trail’s Carolina Courts. The match is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. and admission is free to the public. Following the match, the Wingate players and coaches will host a free players clinic.

The Bulldogs, currently ranked 16th in the nation with a 13-0 overall record, according to the American Volleyball Coaches Association Division II poll, have won 36 consecutive regular-season matches and hold an incredible 71-match Southern Athletic Conference win streak.

Last season Wingate advanced to the Division II Elite Eight with a 31-2 overall record and an 18-0 SAC mark.

Monroe, Forest Hills gain momentum

After starting out with sub-par non-conference schedules, the Monroe Redhawks and the Forest Hills Yellow Jackets seem to be back on track and headed toward an end-of-season showdown for the Rocky River 1A/2A conference title. Monroe began the year 1-3 with losses to Porter Ridge, Marvin Ridge and Concord before winning its last two contests over Piedmont and Union Academy by a combined score of 96-24 and improving its record to 3-3.

“We told our kids last week (that we wanted to go on a) 7-0 run,” said Redhawks coach Johnny Sowell, who added that his team’s preseason schedule included scrimmages against powerful squads such as Charlotte Catholic and Sun Valley before it embarked on its non-conference schedule filled with Class 3A and 4A teams. Monroe is a Class 1A school.

“We, as coaches and players, had to come together,” Sowell said. “We (coaches) have to tell them, ‘This is non-conference. We want to be 11-0, 12-0 – we do. But hey, let’s face it; we’ve got 20-something kids, they have 48-50 kids. We’re just going to work our way into getting in shape, and we’re going to be all right down the stretch.’”

More than anything, though, the rough early schedule showed Sowell that his players have mettle.

“Who really wanted it,” responded Sowell when asked what the opening slate taught him about his players. “We’re never going to accept a loss as coaches – we turn up the tempo, too. Those guys stuck around. We told them why they were doing what they were doing, why they’re running extra sprints, why the coaches are being intense. You can’t make the same mistake over and over.”

Forest Hills lost its first three games before winning its last three. The Yellow Jackets dropped games to Union County Weekly No. 1 Porter Ridge, No. 4 Weddington and a powerful Anson team before downing Parkwood, West Stanly and Cuthbertson in their last three games. In the three victories, Forest Hills has outscored its opponents, 171-32.

Forest Hills travels to Piedmont on Friday, Oct. 30, while Monroe is slated to host Cuthbertson the same night.

Stallings Elementary Halloween Fun Run

On Oct. 29, Stallings Elementary will hold its third annual Halloween Fun Run. Participants will complete a 1-mile course, and organizers will be awarding ribbons and Halloween treats. There also will be a costume contest.

Registration is $3 per person and $6 per family by Oct. 28. On the day of the event, registration will be $5 per person.

For more information, send an e-mail to Bo Mielczak at

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