Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Reflections from Tuesday & looking at tonight's big matchups

-- Anticipation is building, judging from my calls and emails, for tonight's East Meck girls at Butler game and the Lake Norman at Hopewell boys basketball games.

Both games match up the top two teams in the Sweet 16. All four teams are ranked among the top five in the state 4A media poll.

In the girls poll, No. 1 East Meck leads No. 2 Butler by one game in the league championship race. Tonight's game likely determines a split of the title or an outright Eagles crown.

The same is true in the boys game, where No. 1 Hopewell leads No. 2 Lake Norman by one game.

Cierra Burdick, the Tennessee recruit, leads the Bulldogs (13-3, 7-1 Southwestern 4A) averaging 18.9 points, 10 rebounds and 3.7 assists. Burdick came close to a triple-double in Tuesday's 48-39 win over Ardrey Kell -- when the Bulldogs had to rally from a 25-18 halftime deficit. Butler outscored the Knights 17-4 in the third quarter. Burdick finished with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 8 steals.

Teammate Clair Gardin, heading to Vanderbilt, had 13 points, two under her average. Gardin scored her 1,000th point recently.

Butler has four players averaging double-figures: Gardin, Burdick, Quay Barrino (12.8) and May May Dunovant (10.1)

The Hopewell-Lake Norman doubleheader will tip off at 5:30 with girls playing. The boys should start about 7:15 p.m. tonight.

-- Providence High's Myron Lowery got his 200th win in a wild 49-48 win over Myers Park Tuesday. Panther Terrance Hampton scored all seven of his team's fourth quarter points and really went nuts in the final 22 seconds. He hit a 27-foot 3-pointer to get his team within one point and then made a baseline fade-away with 12 seconds left for the win.

Interestingly, Lowery's first-ever win as a coach came against Myers Park and the first game he ever coached was against Mustangs' head coach Rick Lewis.

-- Despite struggling with his shot most of the game, Ardrey Kell's Justin Cheek hit a contested layup in the final seconds of his team's 45-44 win over Butler. The Knights remained one game back of East Meck in the tight Southwestern 4A standings.

Cheek finished with 11 points. Cameron McQueen had 13 for the Knights. Anthony Stitt had 28 for Butler.

Southwestern 4A Standings

Tonight’s Game Friday’s Game
1. East Mecklenburg 7-1 (11-9) @ Butler AK

2. Ardrey Kell 7-2 (15-6) @ Myers Park @ EM

3. Providence 6-2 (13-7) @ Independence @ BU

4. Myers Park 5-4 (11-8) ARDREY KELL SM

5. Butler 3-5 (6-13) EAST MECK PR

T 6. Independence 1-8 (3-17) PROVIDENCE BYE

T 6. South Mecklenburg 1-8 (3-16) BYE @ MP

-- Charlotte Christian's boys have now won 11 straight after Tuesday's 74-55 win over Charlotte Country Day. Friday, the Knights play rival Providence Day and face Hickory Grove Saturday. Next week comes tough games with Victory Christian (Tuesday) and Concord Cannon (Thursday, Feb. 11). The Cannon game will decide the CISAA conference championship.

-- The Hickory Grove-Christian girls game Saturday could be a playoff preview, or even a state championship preview. It'll feature some serious college talent, including Christian 6-3 freshman GiGi Bailey, who already has 10 Division I scholarship offers.

-- Berry's girls continue to impress. Essence Baucom had 18 in a 50-42 win over Monroe as the team improved to 15-4 overall and 10-2 in the Rocky River.

-- Charlotte Catholic's girls beat Waddell 61-10 Tuesday, leading 24-1 after the first quarter. The Cougars are one win away from clinching at least a share of the MEGA 7 championship. The Cougars play at West Meck tonight and can get the share. They can win outright against Garinger later this week.

-- Charlotte Catholic boys seriously injured Waddell's MEGA championship hopes with a 58-53 upset Tuesday. John Hatton had 17 for the Cougars. Waddell and Harding both have three league losses. Olympic has none and is zeroing in on a league title.

-- West Meck's Terrance Williams had 33 in a 76-70 win over Garinger Tuesday. David Johnson had 21 for the Wildcats.

-- Anson Senior's boys are 13-8 and 5-2 in the Southern Carolina conference and in first place. The team has a big game with second place Marvin Ridge Friday in a game that could essentially decide the conference championship. Anson's Terrance Polk, a junior forward had a big game in Friday's 65-48 win over Sun Valley: 20 points and 22 rebounds.

That was one rebound short of the school record he set earlier this season. He had eight points in Tuesday's 62-56 win over Weddington.

-- The reason Anson was able to take over first place in the league was because Keith Mason's Indian Trail Sun Valley team (13-6, 4-3) upset Marvin Ridge (7-8, 4-2) 62-59 at Marvin Rdige Tuesday. Luke Maynor had 23 for Sun Valley. T.J. Tolbert had 20 for coach Gosnell White's Marvin Ridge team which started the season 0-3.

-- GAME CHANGES: Weather continues to affect the scheduling (doubleheaders start at 6 unless noted:
Bessemer City at Cherryville, Thursday
Bessemer City at Highland Tech, Saturday, Feb., 13, 4:15 p.m.
Bessemer City at North Gaston, Friday, 5 p.m.
Concord at Central Cabarrus moved to Feb. 10
Central Cabarrus at Concord Robinson, moved to tonight
Cox Mill at Central Cabarrus: Moved up to Thursday to avoid potential weather situation Friday
East Rutherford at Morganton Freedom, Thursday
Lincolnton at Bessemer City, Thursday, Feb. 11
Lincolnton at North Lincoln, Thursday
North Lincoln at Cherryville, tonight
Statesville at South Rowan, Monday
Wesleyan at Charlotte Latin, Thursday (moved from Friday)