Sports Shorts for January 6

Area track teams finish year strong

If the end of 2011 offered any indication, 2012 might be a banner year for Union County track and field teams. On Dec. 30, several local athletes competing on winter track and field teams won events at Providence High School’s Polar Bear meet in south Charlotte.

The Marvin Ridge boys team won a total of eight events at the meet. Justin Titgen claimed first place in the 55-meter dash with a time of 6.5 seconds, while teammate Alec Lane took top honors in the 500 in 1 minute, 9.6 seconds. Lane also joined Nicholas Futia, Kendon Corbett and Drew Buckley in winning the 4×800-meter relay in 8:35.40.

The Mavs also excelled in the field events. Christopher Garrick’s effort of 5 feet, 6 inches was good for first place in the high jump. Bailey Corbett cleared 10 feet for first place in the pole vault, while Taylor Capoziello leapt 19 feet for a first-place finish in the long jump. Matt Townsend also reached gold by putting the shot 43-9.5, while Alex Penner’s distance of 40-1 in the triple jump placed him atop the podium.

The Weddington boys posted three wins in the event, including the 1,000 (Tanner Glackin in 2:53.60) and the 1,600 (Matt Burns in 4:47.10). Glackin also teamed with John Michael Davidson, Hunter Roark and Karim Habbal to claim first place in the 4×400 relay (3:40.80).

Sun Valley led the way in the girls competition with three wins, two of which came from Rickell Reid, who won the 500 (1:21.9) and the 300 (43.0). Teammate Liz Keech cleared 30-10.25 to claim first place in the shot put. Weddington’s Nicole Gaylord took top honors in the high jump (4-4), and Marvin Ridge’s Madelyn Dotson’s effort of 7 feet in the pole vault earned her first place.

State wrestling rankings

According to, North Carolina’s preeminent high school wrestling website, several Union County grapplers are among the state’s elite within their respective weight classes.

In Class 1A, Central Academy of Technology & the Arts had four athletes listed among the top 10 of their weight classes, including Jairo Velazquez, who’s ranked second in the 132-pound division; Alex Ortiz, the fourth-ranked 145-pounder; Nick Gagatch, the fourth-ranked 182-pounder; and Jason Gulotta, ranked fifth in the 195-pound class.

Piedmont again seems to be one of the top-ranked 2A clubs in the state with eight wrestlers earning top-10 rankings. Kirby Haigler (ranked fifth among 113-pounders), Michael McLamb (sixth at 132 pounds), Steven Bunch (eighth at 138), Lucas Smith (fifth at 145), Matt Maske (sixth at 152), Parker Von Egidy (first at 170), Bryce Braswell (sixth at 182) and Kyle Eiss (second at 285) all were honored. Cuthbertson’s Cody Walker is the top-ranked 120-pounder in 2A.

A pair of local wrestlers also made the 3A and 4A lists. Marvin Ridge’s Stuart Todd ranks seventh among 132-pounders in Class 3A, while Sun Valley’s Michael Macchiavello is the eighth-ranked 182-pound grappler in Class 4A.

Charlotte Eagles hold open tryout

The Charlotte Eagles, members of the USL PRO League, will be hosting their open tryouts for the 2012 season
Feb. 24-25. The tryouts are an opportunity for any free agents, college seniors and other amateurs hoping to make the jump to the professional level.

The players attending the tryouts will be assessed by the Charlotte Eagles coaching staff, led by longtime coach Mark Steffens who, according to an Eagles press release said, ‘We are very excited to hold open tryouts this year. I expect there will be quite a few strong players that we don’t know about. It would be great to find a few impact players that could immediately help the Eagles in 2012.”

The tryout will consist mainly of 11-on-11 matches. On the first day of tryouts players will be competing for an opportunity to come back on the second day to be evaluated by the coaching staff.

There will be a $100 non-refundable registration fee, which will change to $125 after Feb. 5. The walk-up registration fee will be $150. if a player should make the team, the registration fee will be reimbursed.

The Doubletree Gateway Village in Charlotte will be offering participants discounted hotel rooms at $79/night, as well as a free shuttle service to and from the tryout.

Formed in 1993, the Charlotte Eagles are entering their 20th season as a USL club. The Charlotte Eagles have been in the USL finals on eight occasions, winning two titles in 2000 and 2005,

The Charlotte Eagles are owned and operated by Missionary Athletes International, an evangelical Christian organization.

For more information, visit

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