Up & Coming Weekly

December 26, 2018

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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20 UCW DECEMBER 26, 2018-JANUARY 1, 2019 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM HIGH SCHOOL HIGHLIGHTS Top 10 High School Highlights stories from 2018 a STAFF REPORT Here are the High School Highlights top ten sto- ries for Cumberland County for last year as voted on by a panel of Up & Coming Weekly staff and select voters from around the county. 1. Jack Britt softball team makes history. The first week of June, the Jack Britt High School softball team became the first in Cumberland County history to win a North Carolina High School Athletic Association fast-pitch state softball cham- pionship. Cape Fear High School and South View High School had previously won slow-pitch state titles, but the Buccaneers took the first fast-pitch championship when it defeated South Caldwell two games to three in their best-of-three championship series at North Carolina State. MacKenzie George of Jack Britt was named the most valuable player in the championship series. In the final game she was 3-for-4, scored twice and drove in a run. She was 2-for-4 in the opening game, scored a run and drove one in. Britt finished the season 25-6. The state title marked an amazing comeback for a Britt team that at one point in March lost three games in a row and four of five to teams in the Sandhills Athletic Conference. As it turned out, that stretch of tough competition within its conference helped push Britt to success in the postseason. When the MaxPreps state 4-A softball rankings came out after Britt's title run, it showed conference teams Richmond Senior, Purnell Swett and Lumberton were all ranked among the 20 best 4-A softball teams in the state. 2. Cape Fear High School wins a top honor from the NCHSAA. At the May annual meeting of the NCHSAA in Chapel Hill, Cape Fear High School received the 2017-18 Exemplary School Award. The award is presented on behalf of the NCHSAA, the North Carolina Coaches Association and the North Carolina Athletic Directors Association. The award recognizes a school for having a "total" program that includes success in athletics, the scope of athletic opportunities offered, community interest and involvement in academics. Other areas of recognition include sportsmanship and the professional development of coaches and administrators. In a press release announcing the award, NCHSAA commissioner Que Tucker said Cape Fear was richly deserving of the award and had demon- strated a commitment to education and excellence second to none among its peers in North Carolina. "Athletic director Matt McLean and his staff are truly leading the way in student engagement and achievement,'' Tucker said. "We are very proud of their hard work and dedication to education-based athletics and the NCHSAA.'' 3. Cumberland County enjoys one of its best years in recent memory in the NCHSAA football playoffs. Cumberland County had multiple teams make deep runs in the NCHSAA football playoffs, led by Seventy-First's advance to the 4-A Eastern Regional finals against Scotland High School. Four teams advanced to the third round. Seventy- First and South View met each other in the 4-A playoffs. Pine Forest, the regular-season champion in the Patriot Athletic Conference, hosted Scotland High School. In 3-A, Terry Sanford reached the third round before falling to perennial power Havelock. Jack Britt also advanced to the playoffs, losing in the first round of 4-A. In 3-AA, Cape Fear and Gray's Creek made the first round. 4. Brothers Andrew and Christian Jayne both picked in major league baseball draft. Brothers Andrew and Christian Jayne, who starred on the football and baseball fields for Terry Sanford, were both chosen in the major league baseball draft. Andrew was taken in the 19th round by the Baltimore Orioles while brother Christian went in the 27th round to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Both had previously signed to play college sports, Andrew with Davidson College in football and Christian with East Carolina University in football. Andrew elected to sign a minor league contract and was assigned to the Orioles rookie league team in the Gulf Coast League. He batted .212 with 11 The Jack Britt softball team won the first NCHSAA fast-pitch state softball championship. Brothers Andrew (left) and Christian (right) Jayne were both selected in the Major League Baseball draft. Seventy-First football coach Duran McLaurin coached his team to the Eastern football finals this year. Gray's Creek's Earl Horan was one of many athletes to benefit from Cumberland County's support of Unified Sports. Jack Britt softball coaches Sebrina Wilson (left) and Joe Myrtle (right)

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