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PREP ROUNDUP: Rams trio signs, Falcons win track title

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D.H. Conley soccer players Gabby Krikman (left) and Haven Best sign with Cape Fear Community College on May 6.

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The Daily Reflector

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Athletes from three area schools have made their commitments to teams at the next level. 

Greene Central held a spring signing day for three of its seniors on Tuesday afternoon, including a historic moment for the Rams girls soccer team.

Senior Alyssa Keatts became the first player from GC to sign and play at the collegiate level. She signed with Division II Pfeiffer, and despite playing mostly in midfield for the Rams, she’ll be playing goalkeeper for the Falcons. Keatts plans on studying exercise science at Pfeiffer.

“It means a lot,” Keatts said. “I’m really proud and thankful for the opportunity to play at the next level. I felt Pfeiffer was a really good fit for me athletically and academically and the coaches made a big impact on my decision.”

Jekael Gay and Donte Johnson both signed to play basketball at Fayetteville Technical Community College, joining fellow local prospect and South Central guard RaQuann Vann.

“I feel like I’ve grown up today,” Gay said about his signing. “Being coached well and working on the fundamentals of basketball got me here. It’s awesome that I still get to be teammates with Donte. Going to FTCC is an opportunity for me to get better on and off the court.”

Johnson added he will miss being a Ram, but thanked head coach Blue Edwards and his staff for the opportunity he was given. 

“It’s a brotherhood here,” Johnson said about his time at GC. “I love my teammates and coaches and I’ll really miss them. It’s all about hard work and dedication at the next level. If you work hard and do the little things, it will always pay off in the end.”

 -Laieke Abebe

Panthers volleyball stars sign

Two North Pitt volleyball standouts, Casandra Watson and Briana Dillard, also will continue their careers. 

Watson, who finished with over 1,000 kills in her high school career, will join the Fayetteville State squad next season, while Dillard will stick close to home, signing with Pitt Community College. The pair helped the Panthers bring home a 2-A state basketball title in the 2017-18 season. 

Conley soccer seniors off to Cape Fear

D.H. Conley seniors Haven Best and Gabby Kirkman will be taking the next step together, as they both signed with Cape Fear Community College on Monday. 

“I’ve always wanted to play in college,” Best said. “Coach (Ryan) Deppa reached out to me and I really enjoyed the campus when I went to visit.”

Kirkman admitted that Best’s commitment drew her to Cape Fear, along with her dream to transfer to the Naval Academy. 

“I went and visited the campus and just fell in love,” Kirkman said. “The coach was awesome and I’m looking forward to it. I want to study something in the medical field, but I plan to reapply to the Naval Academy, so I’ll take some of the classes I need for that while I’m at Cape Fear.”

Falcons claim 3-A/4-A Eastern Carolina Conference track and field title

South Central swept the 3-A/4-A ECC track championships on May 2 at New Bern High School. 

The Falcons boys finished with 169.1 points, while the girls also earned the top spot with 185.5 points.

Girls winners for SC included Corinne Cox (800), Paige Witteborg (3200) and Ninevah Reddick (triple jump). 

Boys winners included Fletcher Bost (1600), Kendrick Britton (300 hurdles), Jemere Artis (triple jump), Brandon Hardy (shot put), Phillip Chen (discus) and the boys 4x400 relay team of Cameron Clark, Durrell Simpson, Nkosi Tyson and Britton.

D.H. Conley’s boys team took third with 112.5 points. The Vikings girls team finished second with 103.6 points.

Winners for the Vikings girls squad were Emma Cole (1600) and the girls 4x800 relay team of Cole, Eve Curtis, Annika Stokes and Hayley Ferrell.

Vikings boys winners included Jalen Wilson (800), Peyton Walters (3200) and the boys 4x800 relay squad of Eli Orians, Wilson, AJ Miller and Zach Tucker.

J.H. Rose’s boys team took fourth (86.70), and the girls finishing second (113). 

Winners for the Rampants girls team were Jordan Sales (100, 400, 200), Jenequa Wilson (100 hurdles, 300 hurdles) and the 4x400 relay team.

Boys winners included Michael Allen (100), Daishon Donald (200) and the 4x200 relay team. 

Panthers Whitehurst brings home conference honor

North Pitt track and field athlete Tylon Whitehurst was crowned 2-A Eastern Plains Conference male field athlete of the year over the weekend.

Whitehurst took home gold in the high jump, long jump and triple jump. 

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High Schools

May 17, 2019

The South Central softball team couldn’t catch a break Friday night in Winterville, and Hoggard took advantage, ending the Falcons season with a 5-0 loss.

The Vikings advanced to the 4-A East Regional championship with a 5-0 road win over the Falcons on Friday night. They’ll begin the…

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May 17, 2019

Another busy night at Hollywood Crossroads Friday resulted in the Vikings baseball and softball teams advancing to the 3-A East Regional Finals, which begin Tuesday. 

The second-seeded baseball team topped three-seed Fike, 9-5.

Led by UNC-Greensboro commit Robbie O’Neal on the mound, DHC…

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May 17, 2019

Christ Covenant School capped off a highly successful boys’ golf season by winning the North Carolina Independent Schools Athletic Association 1-A state championship earlier this week at Whispering Pines Golf Club.

After finishing second in its conference, Christ Covenant was led by all-…

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May 17, 2019

As the high school state playoffs progress, nights at most other schools have become less and less active as remaining teams are forced out after each round, their seasons ended, and preparations for next season already begun.

Such is not the case for the D.H. Conley Vikings, who have three teams…

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May 16, 2019

They say defense wins championships, and that’s exactly what D.H. Conley goalkeeper Maeve English is looking to do. The talented junior made plenty of impressive stops, including  blocking a critical penalty kick, in Conley’s 1-0 win over Chapel Hill Wednesday night. Preps beat…

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May 15, 2019

Planning, preparation and strategy were the keys for the top-seeded D.H. Conley girls soccer team Wednesday evening, as the Vikings defeated ninth-seeded Chapel Hill, 1-0, to advance to the 3-A East bracket’s fourth round 

It was Gabby Kirkman who broke through mid-way through the second…

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May 15, 2019

It wasn’t just another signing day at Greene Central on Tuesday afternoon.

Along with Dylan Benton and Brandon Gilbert committing to play college sports, the Rams also appointed Jason Wilson as their new head football coach.

Benton will play baseball at Louisburg College, while Gilbert will…

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May 14, 2019

South Central used a big sixth inning to avenge last year’s playoff elimination with a 10-3 win over Jack Britt on Tuesday in the third round of the 4-A state playoffs. The Falcons’ third-round matchup with the Buccaneers was a rematch of the 2018 East Regional final.

“It feels…

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May 13, 2019

Four Pitt County teams remain in the hunt for a state championship as the second week of the spring state playoffs begins.

D.H. Conley remains at the forefront with three teams looking to advance to the fourth round in games on Tuesday and Wednesday night. The South Central softball team also is…

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May 10, 2019

It wasn’t easy, but D.H. Conley baseball continued its winning ways against rival J.H. Rose this season.

The Vikings took down the Rampants for the third time with a 6-3 win on Friday night in front of enthusiastic fans at Conley in the second round of the 3-A state playoffs. Conley…

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