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Spring sports can't be here soon enough

Cleaning up

Posted: February 16, 2014 - 1:08am  |  Updated: February 16, 2014 - 1:09am

Spring sports are starting in full force this week.

Or are they?

As we sat through the icy rain that broke trees and power lines, one can only imagine what it will be doing to our local baseball diamonds and fields. Sure, the temperate weather forecast for the weekend could melt the accumulated ice/snow, but will the different venues be so waterlogged as to require postponements. We’ll see.

My wife and I arrived to ice and snow in 2010 and there has been a wintry mix every two years since, so at least we know next year should be pretty good.

A pair of teams that were not cooled off by the weather were the Evans High School Knights and Lakeside Panthers boys basketball teams.

After battling each other for the subregion title a week ago, the squads took to the hardwood against competitors from the other half of the region in the Region 2-AAAAA basketball tournament.

On Tuesday afternoon, the No. 1 seed Knights played at home against No. 4 Northside and advanced to the semifinals with a 61-46 win. The win also ensured a spot in the state tournament. Patrick Lawrence, coming off a 29-point performance against the Panthers, led the Knights with 22 points. Dedrick Story chipped in with 12 points while K’lon Lovett and Kameron Mason had eight points apiece.

Like the Knights, the No. 2 seed Panthers advanced to the state tournament with a 66-54 win over Jones County. Sam Powell poured in 23 points, BJ Raymond and Trovonte’ Brown added 17 and 10 points, respectively, and Jake Gilbert pulled down 16 rebounds.

After battling for the aforementioned subregion crown, if the Knights and Panthers won their semifinal matchups on Saturday, they will be playing for the region title Monday with at least one home game in the state tournament locked up for each.

The girls tournament was the main one affected by the ice and snow. Originally set for Wednesday, the opening-round games were changed to Friday after school closings on Wednesday and Thursday. Their semifinal games were also Saturday with the finals tomorrow.

I said this before and I’ll say it again although with the weather I probably shouldn’t. I’ll say that three county girls teams advanced to the state tournament with opening- round wins in their region tournament.

No. 1 seed Greenbrier has learned how to win close games at the end and No. 2 seed Grovetown was the No. 2 seed by virtue of two losses in three games to the Lady Wolfpack. If No. 3 seed Evans got the kind of production they could from other players, Jasmine Stone, who should be the region player of the year, should have propelled them into another matchup in the semifinals against Greenbrier. The Lakeside Lady Panthers play hard, but they are a very young team that is at least a season away from making it to the big dance.

I say all that about the girls with confidence because three of the four teams in the other half of the region entered with overall losing records.

If any of the girls or boys teams finish first or second, they will have home games beginning with the girls on Wednesday and the boys on Thursday. Check Wednesday’s News-Times for the latest schedules.

The state wrestling tournament in Duluth, Ga. was affected by the weather and county wrestlers will now grapple for glory on Fridayand Saturday.

 

Cleaning up

 

From before Feb. 5 when our local athletes signed letters of intent en masse. Augusta Christian’s Matt Chiera was offered a preferred walk-on at South Carolina as a kicker. Best of luck to him.

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