Hoops Heaven is Here

The baskeball season has entered the stretch run and for the high schools it’s do or die and nice try, see you next year.  For the colleges, they are winding down the regular season and jockeying for conference tournament position and the NCAA bids.

Monday night I rode the basketball beat to the street and hit Lincoln and Lee running.  The Dudley Panthers were home on Abraham Lincoln Blvd. just off East Lee.  Dudley was one of the few local boys teams to get the job done on Monday night with Kenny Belton delivering some big knock-out punches early and the Panthers rolled over South Granville by 28 points winning 80-52.  Dudley led by as much as 40 and now they will play host to Wilson Fike in round two of the sectionals on Wednesday night.  Dudley is now 21-4 and Fike stands 17-7.

Other boys squads that survived Monday’s opening round included High Point Central, Northeast Guilford, Ragsdale, and High Point Andrews.  Ragsdale(20-6) and HP Andrews(19-7) will meet in the second round on Wednesday, and this one will be at Andrews since the Red Raiders won their conference tournament and the Tigers came in 3rd place in their conference.

Northeast Guilford(23-5) will have to travel to face Burlington Williams(18-8) in round two and the Rams need to win at BW to return to Greensboro so they can face Dudley at DHS on Friday night in the finals. If NEG loses to BW and Dudley moves on past Fike then Dudley would have to make the trip down to Burlington Friday night.

The Black Bison of High Point Central have the home court advantage locked up and they will go up against Central Cabarrus on Wednesday.  The Bison are now 25-2 and the #1 ranked 4-A team in the state.  Area boys teams that saw their seasons’ come to a close on Monday included Smith, Northwest Guilford who lost to HPC, the Page Pirates who fell on the road to Huntersville 70-57, and the Grimsley Whirlies saw Winston-Salem Reynolds end their year 68-56 over in WS.

The girls get going this evening with Grimsley, HPC, NWG, NEG, SWG, Dudley, Ragsdale, and Eastern Guilford all at home, while Page, HPA, Southeast Guilford, and Southern Guilford all hit the road.  I plan on being over at Grimsley to watch the WhirlieGirls(25-1) take on East Rowan.  For the complete brackets on all the boys and girls high school basketball games go to www.nchsaa.unc.edu and you will have everything.

On the college front the Lady Spartans of UNCG closed out their 2006/2007 home schedule with a nice 71-56 victory over the Wofford Terriers on Monday evening.  I did not attend this game but I caught the closing minutes on AM 950 with Frank Santore providing the call and Brittany Frazier answered the call scoring a career-high 20 points for UNCG on senior night. 

UNCG improves to 20-8/13-4 and they have one regular-season game left coming up this Saturday at SoCon #1 Western Carolina.  The Southern Conference tournamenet gets under way for the Spartans next week in Charleston, South Carolina.