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Kinston vs. Southern Lee (FINAL UPDATE)

SPECIAL THANKS TO THE MAN, THE LEGEND — KEITH SPENCE — FOR KEEPING YOU GUYS UP TO DATE WITH LAST NIGHT’S GAME. THANKS, DUDE! 

FINAL: Kinston 74, Southern Lee 66 — Kinston advances to 3A Eastern Regional Championship against Greensboro Dudley Saturday at 3pm at Minges Coliseum. Bo Ingram and Curtis Hines lead the way with 16 points apiece (Hines had 14 in the 2nd half). Quentin Coples adds 15 (13 after halftime) and Miguel Starkey adds 14. Congratulations to coach Wells Gulledge and the Vikings.

END of THIRD QUARTER: Kinston 52, Southern Lee 45 (Vikings outscore Cavaliers 26-17 in period).

Vikes start 3rd quarter on 9-0 run, lead 35-28 at the 6:17 mark.

HALFTIME: Southern Lee 28, Kinston 26 (Bo Ingram & Miguel Starkey 8 points each for KHS. Vikings just 12 of 38 from the field, 0 of 7 from 3-point range, and 2 of 6 from the foul line.)

End of the first quarter: Southern Lee 17, Kinston 16 (Bo Ingram 6 points for KHS)

First Game Final: Greensboro Dudley 63, Wilson Hunt 51. (Kinston vs. Southern Lee scheduled to start at approximately 9 pm)

End of 3rd Quarter: Dudley 48, Hunt 25
HALFTIME UPDATE: Greensboro Dudley 30, Wilson Hunt 16. Dudley is big and physical.

Pre-game prediction: Kinston 85, Southern Lee 67. The SL coach swears he is going to run with Kinston, so the Vikings might even hit triple digits tonight. I haven’t seen SL this season, but from what I’ve heard, they don’t have the horses to run with KHS.

See you at the game.

The South rises again

It didn’t take long for the first upset of the prep baseball season as South Lenoir defeated North Lenoir 3-1 in the season-opener for both teams on Tuesday. NL was without Sthil Sowers, who was suspended for violating a team rule (he’ll back for Wednesday’s home opener against West Craven). Brandon Sutton struck out 13 Blue Devils in five innings, but was lifted when he hit his pitch count of 65.

SL’s Brad Jones earned the win with a complete-game effort that included eight strikeouts and one walk. The only run that Jones gave up was unearned.

All-in-all, a great game.

Additionally: congrats to the SL softball team, which won 1-0 at North Lenoir today. Looks like it was a good day to be a Blue Devil.

And somewhere … Jimmy Smith is smiling.

East Carolina’s 2007 football schedule (updated 2-27 with predictions)

This IS one hell of a tough schedule.

Sept. 1 — at Virginia Tech
Sept. 8 — North Carolina
Sept. 15 — Southern Mississippi
Sept. 22 — at West Virginia
Sept. 29 — at Houston
Oct. 6 — Central Florida
Oct. 13 — at Texas-El Paso
Oct. 20 — North Carolina State
Oct. 27 — UAB
Nov. 3 — at Memphis
Nov. 10 — at Marshall
Nov. 24 — Tulane

Here are three sets of predictions…

OPTIMISTIC (10-2 overall, 8-0 in C-USA; win C-USA’s East Division)

at Virginia Tech: Loss

North Carolina: Win

Southern Miss: Win

at West Virginia: Loss

at Houston: Win

Central Florida: Win

at UTEP: Win

N.C. State: Win

UAB: Win

at Memphis: Win

at Marshall: Win

Tulane: Win

 

PESSIMISTIC (5-7 overall, 4-4 C-USA)

at Virginia Tech: Loss

North Carolina: Loss

Southern Miss: Loss

at West Virginia: Loss

at Houston: Loss

Central Florida: Win

at UTEP: Loss

N.C. State: Win

UAB: Win

at Memphis: Win

at Marshall: Loss

Tulane: Win

 

REALISTIC (8-4 overall, 6-2 C-USA; probably tie for C-USA East title)

at Virginia Tech: Loss (Hokies should challenge for ACC title)

North Carolina: Win (Too early for Butch to make a difference)

Southern Miss: Win (ECU won at So. Miss last year)

at West Virginia: Loss (WVU will be in preseason top 5)

at Houston: Loss (Cougars are preseason C-USA favorite)

Central Florida: Win (ECU wins in a blowout)

at UTEP: Loss (But it’ll be a heck of a game)

N.C. State: Win (Wolfpack are going to be down, way down)

UAB: Win (an awful team)

at Memphis: Win (see: UAB)

at Marshall: Win (A toss-up, but I think ECU will be on a roll at this point)

Tulane: Win (End season on five-game winning streak)

Saturday’s sectional result

2A boys

St. Paul’s 69, South Lenoir 67: What a game. The Blue Devils played their guts out but lost with 1.3 seconds left when SP’s William McRae went coast-to-coast. Alex Graham scored 17 of his game-high 25 points in the fourth quarter while Quan Outlaw had 24 points. Congrats to the Devils for an excellent season (17-10).

Friday’s sectional finals

3A boys

Kinston 85, Havelock 31: Whew. It was 27-10 after one quarter, 49-18 at halftime and 64-29 after three quarters. The Vikings will play at either 7 or 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday at Minges Arena at ECU in the 3A Eastern Regional (their first since 2003). The other three Eastern teams in the 3A Regional are Wilson Hunt, Southern Lee and Greensboro Dudley.

1A boys

Ayden-Grifton 67, East Columbus 58: The Chargers are in the Eastern Regional for the first time since 2004. The Chargers will play at either 7 or 8:30 p.m. on Friday at Minges Arena at ECU. The other three Eastern teams in the 1A Regional are Wallace-Rose Hill; the other two teams will be decided in games played today.

Want to work for The Free Press?

I am looking for a call-screener to help us out during the spring sports season. You’ll answer calls and do short write-ups. The days and hours are varied, but you’ll work two or three nights a week, 6 to 11 p.m. This is a perfect part-time job for someone who would like to break into sports journalism, teenager, college student or retiree.

Interested? E-mail me at bhanks@freedomenc.com.

Dennis Johnson dead at 52

OK…this one hits me right in the heart. Dennis Johnson, one of the true Boston Celtics greats, is dead at the young age of 52. I’ll provide more details later tonight and as they come in from the AP.

DJ was one of the best defensive guards I’ve ever watched. When I was a kid, he piloted my beloved Celtics to championships in 1984 and 1986. The starting five of DJ, Larry Bird, Robert Parish, Kevin McHale and Danny Ainge were simply terrific and the best I’ve seen in my 38 years of life.

Rest in peace, DJ.

Congratulations to Donovan Davis, Ethan Mills and Jake Rouse

History is being made down south of the river as South Lenoir’s Donovan Davis and Ethan Mills advance to this weekend’s NCHSAA 1A/2A wrestling championships in Winston-Salem. Davis (20-13 at 215 pounds) and Mills (17-6 at 189) are the first SL wrestlers in the program’s two-year history to go to the state finals.

I interviewed the young men this morning and will have a story in Friday’s Free Press about them.

Also, congratulations to Jake Rouse, who signed to play football at Campbell University. He will be part of the first Fighting Camels football team that will take the field in 2008. There will also be a story on Rouse this morning. It was great to do the story and get a picture of Jake and his dad, who is heading back to Iraq shortly in the War on Terror.