Sports Shorts – 3/14

CATA hires new football coach

Central Academy of Technology and Arts announced last week that Phil Smith has been hired as the new football coach, replacing Tad Baucom who accepted the coaching position at Sun Valley after three seasons as the Cougars coach.

Smith, whose previous coaching stints include head coaching positions at Parkwood and North Stanly, along with assistant positions at Sun Valley, West Iredell, Richmond County, Southern Alamance, Southeast Guilford and JF Webb, also will serve as a physical education teacher at

Smith will join the Cougar family full time in May and is still working on putting together his coaching


Neuendorf steps down as 

Porter Ridge football coach

For the second consecutive off-season, Porter Ridge athletics director Bill Rogers will be in the market for a new football coach after Greg Neuendorf stepped down this week to accept a position near his hometown in Ohio.

“As you know Coach Neuendorf has stepped down – he got an extremely good financial package from a school near his hometown that he couldn’t turn down,” Rogers said. “We have to advertise the position and will start that today or tomorrow.”

Rogers said he’s received some interest and inquiries already, but added the program won’t rush to name a coach just for the sake of having a face on the program.

“Legendary basketball coach John Wooden used to say he wanted his offenses to be quick, but not to hurry it,” Rogers said. “You want to do it quickly but you don’t want to mistakes. The sooner you can do it, it helps but you have to match up the best person for your

Last season, Rogers said there were around 20 applicants for the position before ultimately deciding on Neuendorf.

Neuendorf spent one season at Porter Ridge, posting an 8-5 record, which included a 4-2 mark in the Southwestern 4A conference. The Pirates were knocked out of the Class 4A playoffs by conference rival Rocky River.

Prior to resigning, Neuendorf, who is still teaching at the school, had spent the previous four seasons starting the program at Concord Cox Mill from scratch, posting a 22-25 record in the first four years of existence

Warriors fall in quarterfinals

The Weddington boys basketball team lost to Morganton Freedom on March 8 in the fourth round of the Class 3A NCHSAA basketball

Despite the 63-60 loss, senior Blake Waud had a big performance in his last high school basketball game, shooting 86 percent from the floor to pour in 29 points while grabbing 12 rebounds. Senior Brandon Watts added another 13 points with two assists, a steal and a blocked shot. The Warriors also had strong performances from Chris Trevisan (six points, eight rebounds), Jordan Sharpe (five points, four rebounds), Jordan Barber (four points) and Demonta Oates (three points).

The playoff loss was a heartbreaker for the Warriors after accomplishing the most successful season in Weddington basketball history. After finishing the regular season 27-2 and 9-1 in Southern Carolinas Conference play, the Warriors were crowned regular season champions and conference tournament champions, broke the school record for most points in a single game (103), most rebounds in a single game (56) and most assists in a single game (26).

Waud, Barber and Watts were all-conference selections for their senior year and Watts was named the conference Player of the Year.


Young Maverick girls 

squad starts strong

The Marvin Ridge girls lacrosse team improved to 2-0 on March 6 with a road win over Lake Norman Charter before falling to a strong Charlotte Catholic squad on March 10.

Amy Collins led the Mavericks with seven goals in their 17-2 win over Lake Norman. Collins had help from Taylor Sweeney (three goals), Clare Murphy (two), Abbey Stranahan (two), Bayleigh Pavlish (two) and Jenna Rogers (one).

Despite the tough loss to Catholic, coach Doug Collins said that this team is something special.

“We have our sights high for this year’s season,” he said. “Although we’re very young – young being analogous with inexperienced – we have some very talented athletes. I just need to allow this team to discover their true potential over the first half of the season.”

With only three seniors on this year’s team and several key underclassmen, the Mavericks will rely heavily on captains Amy Collins and Sweeney for leadership and veteran experience to bring the Maverick talent

“This team is lucky to have captains who understand the importance of leadership as a tool to help the younger athletes understand their roles on the field and their importance to the success of the program,” Doug Collins said. “I keep telling the team that we’ll face adversity during the season, but everything we do in games and in practice to overcome the obstacles will make us a better and stronger

With experienced juniors in Sweeney, Stranahan and Murphy, the Mavericks also have budding potential in sophomore defenders Abby Joseylyn and Chloe Wallace as well as freshman attacker Katie Atlas and defender Carter Williams.

“The uniqueness of the team’s composition, melding talented freshmen and sophomores with a very small cadre of all-state level returning players, creates an interesting dynamic,” Doug Collins said. “We’ve approached the first (three) games as an opportunity to familiarize the new athletes with our philosophy. They have responded to the challenge by taking the responsibility to be diligent and disciplined in practice and applying what they learned in our games.”

The Marvin Ridge team will take on Hopewell at home on March 13 before facing Lake Norman again next week. With conference play beginning next week, as well, Collins is concentrating on keeping his team focused despite the setback against Catholic.

“I have a firm and abiding confidence that our team’s outstanding work ethic and intelligence will help us recover in the times that we have these setbacks,” he said. “It’s a tribute to the quality of our athletes that I believe every time they have to refocus, the will emerge as a stronger, better team. It’s this quality that I see as the key to a great season and subsequent state playoff run.”


Pirates sweep West Stanly

The Porter Ridge boys tennis team earned a non-conference win on March 10, sweeping West Stanly, 9-0. The Pirates put on a dominating performance, only giving up seven games in singles’ play.

At court 1, Keith Kasler downed Leighton Dry, 8-3. The Pirates’ Chase Davis beat Alex Harkey, 8-3, as the second seed. At court 3, Jordan Toth topped Austin Eudy, 8-1. On courts 4 through 6, Jackson Bailey, Logan McMahan and Taylor Reins grabbed 8-0 wins for the Pirate effort.

In doubles’ play, Kasler and Davis won their match, 8-2, while Toth and Bailey and McMahan and Reins won at courts 2 and 3, 8-1.


Porter Ridge wrestlers earn all-conference nods 

After transitioning to the Southwestern 4A conference, Porter Ridge had several wrestlers earn all-conference nominations.

At 106 pounds, Chris Price was named to the all-conference team and was joined by teammates Logan McMahan (113 pounds), Bryan Newsome (126 pounds), Joseph Roamine (132 pounds), Cooper Mueller (135 pounds), Joey Bataglis (152 pounds), Dylan Mumma (170 pounds), Christian Villacress (182 pounds) and Billy O’Neal (195 pounds).

Independence’s Brian Tiderman and Butler’s Adam Pelter were named co-Wrestlers of the Year.

The Pirates finished the 2013-14 season 14-10.


Cuthbertson boys tennis downs CATA

The Cuthbertson boys team topped Central Academy of Technology and Arts at a home match on March 10. The Cavaliers grabbed wins on four of six singles courts before sweeping the Cougars in doubles’

At the No. 1 seed, Austin Schepel topped Cameron Clemons in two sets, 6-2, 6-1. At the No. 2 seed, the Cavs’ Brock Wesolek fell 6-1, 6-0 to the Cougars Thomas McCorkle. At seeds 3 and 4, the Cavs’ grabbed wins from Jose Barahona who downed Joe Hinkle, 6-2, 6-1, and Will Baker who edged Chris Garvin after winning a tough 9-7 tiebreaker to follow the first sets that split, 6-0, 5-7. In the fifth-seed match, Kyle Franks fell to the Cougars’ Nicholas Olson, 6-4, 6-4, but the Cavs grabbed their fourth win from Landon Pressely who beat Halen Mattison in a tiebreaker, 6-2, 3-6, (7-1).

In doubles’ play, Schepel and Wesolek bested Clemons and Hinkle, 8-4. Barahona and Franks topped Garvin and Olson, 8-3. And at court 3, Baker and Pressely edged McCorkle and Nance, 8-5.

The Cavs travel to Country Day in a non-conference matchup on March 13.


WCWAA fourth grade all-stars go undefeated in tournament play

The Wesley Chapel Weddington Athletic Association No. 2 boys fourth grade all-star team competed Feb. 28 through March 2 in the annual Union County All-Star Tournament held at Carolina Courts.

The fourth-graders were crowned tournament champions after finishing the playoffs with an unbeaten record.

“Our boys had to go through some very tough competition to complete an undefeated tournament,” coach Gary Bohannan said.

The No. 2 Boys Fourth Grade All-Star roster included: Brady Beddingfield, Kyle Bohannan, Jonah Breeden, Michael Colonna, AJ Cook, Justin Jenkins, Alex Meeks, Ryan Metz, Frankie Papaleo and Caden


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