Purple Rain/Panther Pride: Northern and Dudley are the BEST

Posted by Andy Durham on March 16, 2009 at 1:05 pm under High School | 24 Comments to Read

You have to be happy for the Northern Guilford Nighthawks and the Dudley Panthers for their wins in Saturday’s 3-A State Championship games.

The Panthers and the Nighthawks got the job done and it was not easy, they earned those wins. Go back to all of the practices, the games, the off-season workouts, the drills, the trips to the YMCA and the Sportsplex, the late night meals where your supper got cold. These people paid the price and they deserve the Gold Medals.

I wonder how many of the Panthers and Nighthawks wore those medals around their necks to school today, making a statement, that we are “The Champions”.

I wish we were doing an audio version of our blog/show here and I would have the producer(who would probably be me) que up the tune “Purple Rain” and we would let it play out loud for all to hear. If I were a Nighthawk player or fan, I would get a copy of that tune and let it play on non-stop, from now until next season.

For the Panthers, I’m not sure what tune they would choose, but they need to get one, put it in their I-Pod machine/player and let it play on as their victory song. “We Are The Champions” was always good, but I know they can come up with something better than that.

You again, have to be so proud of what all these kids have accomplished and give it to them; THEY ARE THE BEST. Helen Terry, Breonna Patterson, Desiree Drayton, Porsha Roach, Jessica Farr, Chell Jackson, plus Wilkerson, Goins, Rouse, Coach Kris Britton and all of the Panther Pride. We love you kids and look forward to seeing you on the 4-A level next year.

Back to that Purple Rain…..This might be the Biggest Story in the history of Guilford County Sports. What this team at Northern Guilford has done and how did they did it so quick. East Chapel Hill won the State 3-A Men’s Title in just their second year and Eastern Wayne did it too. East Chapel had Henrik Rodl of UNC-fame and Eastern Wayne had David Henderson who went on to Duke.

This is a very big story and Northern has kids that will hit the D-I level just like Rodl and Henderson. Jacob Lawson might end up at Syracuse, who knows? Maybe we’ll see Jon Frye and Michael Neal in the ACC. Christian McCain could be on his way to the NFL one day. Who knows how far these kids might go?

Coach K, Mike Fulcher, Fernando Cole, Andy Symmes, and all of the Northern coaches have done a fine job and they have put in countless hours helping and working with these young men.

Crank up the Purple Rain song and play it like it’s Purple Reign….Let’s see how many Northern Guilford Nighthawk fans we can get to weigh in and support the team here at the site.

There have been a couple of words that have defined this Championship Run, and those would be Success and Jealousy. We have been trying to celebrate the Success the kids have experienced, but there has been so much jealousy getting in the way from many different sources.

The main part of that word jealousy is Lousy and it has been Lousy to see all of the fans that are so against Northern and their Success. This is our last article on this topic and if you have something to say it would be a good time to get it out of your system.

One way or another, the time is now to share your feelings. I would love to see a few hundred Northern fans come on here and take up for their team, but I don’t think we’ll get it. It’s tough to step out and use your name, believe me, I have been doing it for years and you need thick skin.

I do want to commend that great Northern crowd that showed up for the game on Saturday to cheer on their Nighthawks and many of them were pulling for the Dudley girls too. Great turnout by all the fans on Saturday.

Again, I can’t put my finger on all of the Jealousy, but most of it would probably come from people being upset about the kids that have moved into the Northern district. Much of this was addressed in last Friday’s News and Record, the day before the Championship Game, in an article by the N&R’s Robert Bell.

Coach K, Stan Kowalewski, the man in charge of the Northern Guilford Nighthawks basketball team had something to say about that article and I think you need to see it if you haven’t already.

Coach Kowalewski had some very strong feelings about this story. Here are the Coach K excerpts from the N&R blog:

“We don’t make the rules. Guilford County and the NCHSAA make the rules, and we abide by them. And until Guilford County changes their rules, then parents are going to, within those rules, do what they want to do. If they end up at our school, they end up at our school. Or they end up at another school. The rules are what they are. We make sure we follow them to a T, our athletic department as well as our administration. All we can do is follow them, we can’t make them.

It’s very disappointing to me that although the News & Record says that there’s a lot of e-mails from coaches or fans, that nobody is willing to be non-anonymous, that nobody’s willing to bring forth concrete evidence that we’re doing things wrong. Everyone wants to hide behind anonymity. That’s disappointing because I think it’s cowardice. It’s very difficult for us as a school to defend ourselves when we don’t know who our accusers are. …

Whoever these coaches are, it’s just jealousy, that’s all it is. Until they can step up and first of all be a man and make a comment to a newspaper on the record, when they can do that, then I think somebody would listen to them. If I want to hide behind “I don’t want to be revealed as a source,” then it is what it is. …

People thought we were doing something wrong before reading the article and people thought we weren’t. I don’t think the article changes their opinion of it.

I did believe there’s no information in this article that couldn’t have been written two, three, six months ago. The timing of bringing it out on the eve of the state championship, I wasn’t impressed with.

When you work so hard as a coaching staff and your kids work so hard as players to get better, and this article is brought up instead of, ‘Hey, maybe Northern Guilford’s coaches really know what they’re doing. Maybe they work harder than everybody else around here. Maybe their kids work harder and they deserve the accolades they’re getting when they get this far.’ Nobody wants to give us any credit, they just find ways to discredit us.

Our coaching staff, we don’t have any egos. We don’t care. But the kids deserve better than that.”

Coach K is correct. The kids deserve all the credit in the world.

The kids deserve the credit. Crank up the Purple Rain and let it play.

This is our last HS basketball blog/article for the season and what a way to close it out with TWO STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS. I really feel like Greensborosports.com was a part of all of the excitement this year.

Thanks kids, for the fine job you did.

  • Mark said,

    A few things Id like to comment about. I read the article. It seems to me there was a “non-anonymous” person in the story. Coach Kent. Although I question the timing of the story, too, I found it informative. Everyone has been talking about the rumors for years now. It was nice to hear the school and Coach address them. Do I believe them? Not entirely, but I have to have faith that the school system looked into everything so Congrats to everyone at NGS. Andy, you think it’s “lousy” that everyone spews these rumors? Your website is one of the biggest sources. Do you ever screen the junk that people write or is it all about the clicks foryou? JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE CAN SAY IT DOESN”T MEAN YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO PRINT IT. Show some responsibility yourself. Again, congratulations to NGS players and coaches.

    Western Guilford fan

  • D-l for Everyone said,


    Based on my experience with GCS,,,their efforts at looking into anything are
    half-a**ed at best.

    The sad truth is that Transfers for Sports in GCS do occur.

    For many, many years, a girls basketball program in High Point brought in girls from out of town, out of state, and even from the schools next door in order to build their powerhouse program. When certain academic programs were added to the school, it made it that much easier to bring in the studs (all in the name of academia).

    Certain basketball programs in Greensboro have for years been allowed to import players into their programs,,,,knowing darn well that GCS was to afraid to confront such tradition.

    I, for one would like to go back in time when schools played for their community and took the talent that was in their school,developed it, and competed against schools that were all playing by the same rules.

    I do believe that those days of innocence are long gone,,,,,therefore I think that GCS should open the Gates and allow an Open Transfer Rule that would allow everyone, at every school, to negotiate with any coach in the county.

    When the ultimate deal is found by the student-athlete,,, GCS would then set into motion a ” SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT ” plan in order to ” ink the Deal “.

    Could you imagine how many new employees GCS would have to hire to handle this Traffic Jam ???????

    An inside source at the NCHSAA says that talks have begun on a rule that would require an athlete to sit out for a year if they transfer from one school to another.

    If this happens,,, look out,,,because you may get run over by certain coaches leaving the public school arena.

  • Northern Fan said,

    Please these guys won it FAIR AND SQUARE.Congrats Nighthawks and Thanks for posting such a positive article.

  • Andy said,

    First the fans got upset when Mike Krzyzewski came to Duke and started winning. Then it was Alan Ashkinazy when he turned losers into winners and now Stan Kowalewski comes under attack as he takes a team to the State Championship.

    This sounds like a conspiracy to me and we need to look closer at the conspiracy theory and see who might be next in line. Will it be UNCG’s women’s soccer coach Eddie Radwanski or Steve Wojciechowski if he takes the job at Elon or at High Point University.(That sounds like a good idea and I just came up with that one.)

    We try and be fair here at this site and I think the good we do outweighs the bad. We do strive for contant activity, because the goal is to be the best. The headlines and titles are set to draw people’s attention and to develop automatic interest.

    We have deleted comments and have totally dropped several posts in recent weeks because ot the stir that they created. We want to help the kids and hope that they will get more publicity here than they will at any other site. We can not be on this site 24/7, but we do try and keep and eye on what is coming into the site.

    This has become a stopping point for many readers and it is the place where people go to find out what is going on locally in sports. Some people have told me where to go(****), but that’s OK. I like what Mark was saying and his approach is a good one and we can use that to make this site even better. Solid insight…..

    Some of you have said you like the fact that you can sound off here and that you feel like I am the Dr. Phil for the local sports fans. I can feel your pain and I do feel we can help with this forum. We can only get better and you know you can reach me at any time at durhamandy@live.com.

    We have heard from a Western and a Northern fan and right now I have become a Northern and Dudley fan after that great basketball weekend in Raleigh. How about the rest of you what do you have to say?

    The lines are open at Greensborosports.com and we want to hear from you. Over the past several weeks we have been receiving up to 1,000 new readers each day and they can’t all be wrong.

    Is the solution the Open Transfer Policy, like D-I is proposing? Winston-Salem seems to be doing OK with it. The balance of power has gone from WS Reynolds to Mount Tabor in basketball, the football seems to still be fairly spread out; Tabor, EF, WF, Carver etc. and the baseball is spread out too. It used to be Glenn, but now it’s anybody’s guess. EF, Reagan, Glenn, WF….

    There are plenty of good things to talk about at Greensborosports.com and people love reading these comments. Let’s keep on propping up the kids.

  • Nighthawk Student said,

    First off, I would like to thank you for writing a positive article about Northern.
    We won the state championship and no one should try to tarnish what my friends on the team has done.
    They have worked their hearts out to accomplish everything they have done.
    Just stop complaining, and play the game!
    Go Nighthawks!


  • Tom said,

    So much has changed since I played high school basketball. We played in community schools and the only way around this was to go to private school. It was great playing with kids from your neighborhood. Times have changed. I have said many times that sports recruiting exists in some way at almost all of the schools in Guilford County. For years I have disliked the practice, but I have come to terms with it. It is the current landscape because adults have become over involved in kid’s games.

    Until my daughter got old enough, I didn’t even attend a local highschool game of any type. I simply believed what I read in the local paper and the ever present gossip in the gym. I have attended a lot of football games and basketball games this year and I noticed one thing clearly. The kids still love the game! They play with heart and they also play with great sportsmanship. I heard people talking about the evil Dudley empire! That couldn’t be any further from the truth. The girl’s at Dudley couldn’t be any classier and their coach is really nice. I pulled for them this past weekend like I was pulling for Northern.

    I have walked away from this year realizing what I really already knew. The majority of people out there are great people. There is also that fringe element that will hate everybody other than their own school. They will mask this hatred around whatever the current excuse of the day is. The sad thing is that these are supposedly adults.

    The Dudley Boy’s football team, Dudley girl’s basketball, the Northern boy’s basketball, and both Bishop McGuinness teams should be applauded for their performances this year. Do not take any of the nonsense that you hear from some mean spirited people to heart. You are all old enough to realize that you cannot believe everything you hear and don’t let it take away from your success.

  • hm said,

    ran across this thought I would post it here. Computerized state rankings (ala BCS). Regardless of public or private, reputation or whater.


    sorry if this post shows up twice

  • sherri said,


  • raygc said,

    Andy first I just want to say thanks for all the pub the you give the kids.
    I remeber when I played baseball in high school and every Sunday they would have the high school baseball standings in the newspaper and also an article to let you know who the stars of the week were . Those articles really encouraged me has a student to play hard every week and it made you feel good to see your name in the news. I feel that you do the best job in the triad of reporting the accomplishments of not only my kid but all the kids and for that you have my respect.
    Please no matter what anybody says keep doing what you do our kids need that.
    Now when it comes to transfers you and I both know that it is going to happen
    and there is nothing we can do about it. My thought is lets just keep it fair and let
    the same rules apply for all schools. Lets just all get along

  • Concerned said,

    I would like to say the GCS schools have taken there focus off of making it a priority to make sure that kids that play high school sports will get a good education. We have loads of students that are using the GCS schools that have IB, Manderin chinese ,and academies to enrolled in these program just to play sports at that particular school. Currently there are students failing in these programs and no one is concerned. These kids can get athletic scholarship, but if they cannot maintain academically in HS, what makes you think they will in college. I think the principle and athletic director need to go back to the drawing board and put education first. High Point, you are on the map……..

  • PantherFAn said,

    Andy you keep leaving out one Dudley Player. Just because she was hurt doesn’t mean she was not a contributor. In fact she was very much so until she got hurt. She was a major reason why Dudley only lost by two in the championship game in Puerto Rico.
    You’ll see.

  • Andy said,

    Was that Kiera McIvor? The young lady that had the ruptured appendix and came on late in the Winterville South Central game? Get me straight here…..

    We did a little piece on her last week, but we always need to do more.

    Let us know.

    BTW:I heard the ladies from Dudley were on 102 Jamz last night. How did that go? Hope it went well and that they had some fun and got some more recognition which they deserve.

    Thanks for checking in here and pass word……Home of the Panthers and Home of the Nighthawks and Home of just about every kid looking to get a break in Guilford County. Greensborosports.com

  • PantherFan said,

    Yes. No need to single her out…that is not her style. Just include her.

    They were on 102 last night. Quite silly they are. Laughter is wonderful.

    I really hope people will just leave Northern alone so they can get some laughter.

    Any time you have a good coach players will follow. The players know Coach K is a winning coach. (AAU)

    Prime Example would be UNC Football. Players know Butch Davis is a winning coach..hence players signed regardless of the losses…because of the coach.

  • evensteven said,

    Panther Fan,

    Should Guilford County Schools change their policies in order to allow all schools the

    same opportunity to bring in athletes for their teams ?

    Believe it or not, their are great coaches in GCS that still honor the rules , and

    amazingly are able to build winning programs.

    At this point in time , it is just not apples for apples when it comes to comparing


    As far as Butch Davis , every coach that he competes against has the same opportunity to go out and recruit the same players.

    Granted, Butchs’ coaching ability and Carolinas’ deep pockets will bring in some of the best, but all D-l programs basically play by the same rules.

    Right now, in GCS, some schools are granted athletic transfers, while others are not.

  • Get Real said,

    Andy lets stop beating around the bush, what we are talking about are kids. The kids are not to blame here and the deserve all of the credit for all of their hard work. Now “kids” will do what let them do. Look at the record, Coach K is a coach for the Gaters here in Greensboro. His starting line up are all kids from the Gaters and he had/has alot of influence on the “kids” and the parents with the promise of D1 schools. Now is he working within the rules, I’m sure he is. He has worked in the system for years High Point Central and Bishop. But lets please understand why a parent and other Coaches would be upset. First from a parent like myself, when you have a son who has played ball with this “kid” in middle school (Jamestown) and one year of High School and has built a strong relationship with this “kid” and of a sudden the “kid”moves with his parents because of the influnce from one coach. Now the “kid” has lost his friend and buddy to a bunch of promises. Now the “kid” has to listen to that “kid” talk about all the promises that the other coach is offering. You and some of your readers are looking at this issue with blinders on and not for the “kids” well being. We want the best for our “kids” and winning is not always the best but it is a good lession for my “kids” to learn, I just wish that your readers would lean the same. Now try and understand why a “Good” Coach would be upset with this happening in our current system.

  • Andy said,

    I like the team, I like the coach and I know we can’t go backwards now. I can feel for the Page people that lost McCain and the Ragsdale and HPC teams too. McCain is with Page this year, and we might be talking about a different ending. We can all see that, but that’s not the way it is. Until changes take place we play the hand we are dealt.

    We can’t go backwards, we will have to make the best of how things are laid out and Northern is doing that, so now the Nighthawks are the team. That might change in a couple of years, but who is to know?

    There are a lot of sour grapes out here, but all I’m trying to do is find a few positives and keep going forward. Congratulations to NG and to Dudley, they are our Guilford County teams. They played, they won and credit is due……

    As for McIvor, we need to get a show for her and call it McIvor, like McGuyver or McGruber….Time to laugh a little bit in a Saturday Night Live sort of way.

  • Northern Parent said,

    Great job Northern and Dudley. We should be nothing but proud of children that are playing sports and the parents that support them. These kids are strong physically and mentally and work very hard to be their best. Most of these kids work all year round on their sport and learn so many valuable lessons including sportsmanship. I think it’s the parents that have to be reminded of good sportsmanship here. Our kids are doing something positive with their time and thats what matters. I also want to mention the Northern girls basketball team who improved tremendously this season. These girls finished 3rd in the conference only behind Dudley and Rockingham. I see big things from them next season.

  • Rodney said,

    Concerned please tell us what you are concerned about. All I read is that you are dumping on the principle, and the AD of one school. Do you have a son at Page? Why does this bother you so much? What is your solution? How do you know what the grades are? Are you jealous of the Northern success? Did the principle or the AD get the job you wanted? Are you an under achiever in life? Have you beeen married more the one time? Did your first wife leave you for someone more sucessful? I’m trying to find out why you are so concerned about others, and I hope you will give all of us a solution. But if you give us your solution do it by also leaving your name. maybe you can lead a protest to the GCS. Start a petition write to our state congress men and women. If you don’t leave your name then we can assume that every player and student at Northen Guilford has more heart in one bead of sweat the you have your entire life!

    Rodney Broadway

  • hahaha said,

    Rodney Broadway….thats a sweet name, reminds me of “Ron Mexico” for those familiar with the Michael Vick story. If that is really your name, which I doubt, you have been blessed my friend.

  • rodney said,

    hahaha if you look up history my dad played football for unc & and the bills in the NFL. hahaha that. And your name is??????????????????????????????????????/

  • Go Galaxy! said,

    I’ve watched Kiera McIvor last year and this year. She has alot of developing to do. She slows down the game and makes alot of bad decisions. She has nice size just lacks good basketball skills. I’ve seen her working on her game @ sportsplex, she needs to continue. Her mother needs to let her listen to the coaches instructions instead of hers. I wish her well and hope she starts LISTENING to her coaches.

  • Lex Canada aka hahaha said,

    Wasn’t trying to make fun, I said it was a cool name. I just doubted someone would have as cool as name as Rodney Broadway. Very few use their name on here, which I just don’t understand.

    your friend,

    Lex Canada

  • Galaxy said,

    Go Galaxy,

    First of all I think you are wrong. What you saw last year was Kiera moving from playing the 5 spot (which as a Galaxy person) you know 1st hand she performed well at with the Gaters, to the 1/2/3.
    Yes she had to develop facing the basket vs playing with her back to goal. That included ball handling, outside shooting, guarding smaller players. Not an easy task.

    She worked hard in the off-season to get that 1/2/3. She can play 1-5.

    Secondly, she is the most “fundamental” player on the Panthers team second to only one person”per her coaches.” What you see is the great athleticism of the players around her. Perhaps they get away with not boxing out or missing assignments because of their quickness or athletic jumping ability. However, on the next level the coaches will know if you can use your right and left, if you make a left hand lay-up with your right and vice versus, if you box out, and on and on.

    An example of fundamental teams that do not have a lot of “athleticism” Rockingham County, Northwest, East Davidson, Bishop McGuiness.

    BTW: This past fall she was invited to D1A recruiting sessions.

    Panthers go for 2!!!

  • Galaxy said,

    Let me clarify. 2 D1A schools invited her to their recruiting sessions along with other recruits visiting. Although they could not speak with her.

    What does athleticism do when they meet athleticism? Play fundamental basketball.