High School Highlights

Scholar athletes of the week: 12/18/19

18 01 taitum jamesTaitum James

Seventy-First • Volleyball • Senior

James has a grade point average of 3.6. In addition to volleyball, she’s involved with photography. She also officiates volleyball and is
a youth leader in her church.

 



18 02 kaitlyn bradleyKaitlyn Bradley

Seventy-First • Cheerleader • Junior

Bradley has a grade point average of 4.25. She is active in the National Honor Society and is the secretary of the junior class.

Deaver shares passion for football in poem

17 chop deaverWhen Terry Sanford freshman Christian “Chop” Deaver got an English assignment to write a poem about a topic he was passionate about, he didn’t have to think about his subject.

It was going to be football, as he tried to put into the words the message he’d been hearing all year long from head coach Bruce McClelland. His resulting work impressed both his English teacher, Ryann McKay, and McClelland.
“His passion for it really came out in the poem,’’ McKay said. “You could tell that he liked football and is proud to be on the team in his other writings.

“But the way he truly sees it as a brotherhood and a gift from God, all that kind of stuff, really came through in the poem itself.’’

McClelland was also impressed. “In all my years of coaching, I’ve never had a kid, especially a first-year kid, get exactly what I’m trying to say,’’ McClelland said. “Everything he said in the poem was like I was talking to him.’’
Deaver, who got his nickname "Chop" when he was around five because people told him he was thick like a porkchop, doesn’t consider himself a poet at heart.

“I care about my team and family,’’ Deaver said. “Coach Mac has stressed brotherhood a lot this season. I took that and went with it.’’

More Than A Game by Chop Deaver

Football
It is more than a game
We come out here and we play this great game that God has blessed us with
But I don’t think we really understand how lucky we are
Football
It is more than a game
We have an opportunity to do something great that others don’t have
There are many other teams out there sitting on their butts at home
But we don’t seem to notice them
You know why?
Because no one notices people who don’t win
We are winners
Football
It’s more than a game
Everyone is dreaming in their sleep about wanting to be a bulldog
Being a bulldog is something special
We have some of the best talent in the county, no, we have some of the best talent in the state
And we take it for granted
Terry Sanford has been blessed with a tradition of winning
Football
It’s more than a game
People have worked their tail off in the past to allow us to be great
All these coaches come out here and leave their families at home to help you
Because we love you like you are our own kid
Football
It is more than a game
This is a brotherhood that not many people are allowed to say they are a part of
It should mean something to you
I’m going to give you my all
And all I want in return is yours
Because if not
We are going to join the couch club
And be dreaming of other teams in our sleep
Football
It is more than a game
I can’t stress how much I want this for you guys
Play for someone this Friday
Play for these seniors who have grinder for four years
Play for your parents who sacrifice a lot for you
Play for your brothers sitting next to you
Cause we are all one big family
And this is football
It is more than a game

Micheal Warren remembered fondly by family, friends

20 Micheal WarrenIntense competitor and exceedingly generous.

Those were the most frequent words used to describe former Pine Forest High School and Elon University football star Micheal Warren, who recently passed away at the age of 37.

Pastor Alex Dorman of the Lillington Pentecostal Worship Center delivered Warren’s funeral message. Dorman knew Warren a little over 10 years and said he was as generous a person as he’d ever met.

Dorman recalled a time when his son’s dog was run over and killed. Just days later, a new dog of the same breed, complete with American Kennel Club paperwork, showed up at the Dorman home. 

“Mike did it,’’ Dorman said. “He wouldn’t ever own up to it, but he did it, just like the Bible would say, ‘heartily and unto the Lord.’’’

Warren first became a star at Pine Forest, playing for a trio of men who would all be head football coaches. His head coach was Dean Saffos and his position coaches were future Pine Forest head coach Bill Sochovka and future Jack Britt and Scotland coach Richard Bailey.

“He did everything we asked him to do and he did it with 100 percent, with great intensity,’’ Saffos said.

Saffos said Warren turned down multiple college football scholarships to walk on at N.C. State. Things didn’t work out with the Wolfpack so he transferred to Elon, where he became an all-conference player. He had a brief career with a couple of NFL teams, then eventually relocated to Texas where he operated a ranch that specialized in rehabilitating bulls injured in rodeo competitions.

Sochovka was one of Warren’s position coaches at Pine Forest. “He just had no fear of anybody playing against him,’’ Sochovka said. “He was hard-working and never knew when to quit. He just loved the game.’’

Bailey was first impressed with Warren when he, Sochovka and Saffos were watching him play on the kickoff team for the Pine Forest junior varsity.

“Every time on the kickoff he ran down and made the tackle,’’ Bailey said. “I said that kid right there is going to be a linebacker. He has a nose for the ball. He would run through people to make the tackle.’’

During his time at Pine Forest, Warren grew an inch taller and gained about 40 pounds Bailey said. “He worked hard in the weight room,’’ Bailey said.

Warren had a close connection with his teammates that was visible at his funeral as many of his defensive cohorts form 1999 traveled to attend the service.

“That group in 1999 had a special bond,’’ Bailey said. “That defense was the best I ever coached. He was a big part of that.’

Holiday Classic scheduled this weekend

16 01 jimmy peadenThe annual Cumberland County Holiday Classic basketball, now in its second year under a major format change, begins a three-day run Thursday, Dec. 19 at five different sites. This year’s tournament is sponsored by the Southeastern Sports Officials Association.

The boys are divided into the Len Maness and Ike Walker Sr. brackets while the girls will play in the Gene Arrington and Tom Jackson brackets.

The Maness bracket is at Westover, Walker bracket at Jack Britt, Arrington bracket at South View and Jackson bracket at Gray’s Creek.

The championship games in all four brackets will be played Saturday, Dec. 21, at Fayetteville State’s Capel Arena. Here’s a brief look at each bracket.

Boys
Len Maness

16 02 george stackhouseWestover coach George Stackhouse is cautiously optimistic about his team’s chances of winning the Len Maness bracket of this year’s tournament.

The Wolverines have been sparked by a trio of solid scorers so far, led by D’Marco Dunn, Traymond Willis-Shaw and Darius Jewell.

As of this writing, Dunn leads Cumberland County Schools scorers with 21.4 points per game.

Willis-Shaw is averaging 14.2 points and Jewell 13.4.

“We’ve got to concentrate on doing the small things,’’ Stackhouse said. “Our defense has got to improve. I do like the pieces we have.’’
Ike Walker Sr.

16 03 Dee HardyPine Forest coach Jimmy Peaden enters the tournament with a young group of players he feels are buying into playing defense and learning more about offense as the season progresses.
“We’ve got a fun, young group,’’ he said. “I look forward to coaching them and watching them grow.’’

Team leaders so far for the Trojans have been Marquis Eskew and Tristin Harkins. Eskew averages 12.5 points per game and Harkins 11.0.

“I can always look to Marquis to know when a certain play needs to happen, when a certain call needs to be made,’’ Peaden said.

Pine Forest’s top scorer is Isaiah Washington with 16.8 points per game. Peaden said his team is still working on buying into the halfcourt offense.

“We can get out and run with anybody,’’ he said. “If we can execute like we’re supposed to, we’ll be a problem.’’

Girls
Gene Arrington

16 04 nattlie mcarthurAfter a deep run in last year’s state 3-A playoffs, E.E. Smith coach Dee Hardy has been pleased to see her young team quickly regroup from key graduation losses.

Leading the way so far for the young Bullettes is freshman Miya Giles-Jones with an average of 11.8 points per game.

“Out of our first six games I know she’s had four double-doubles,’’ Hardy said. “That’s big for a freshman coming in.’’

Another freshman, Keshiana Murphy, is averaging 9.6 points. Ke’Onna Bryant, the team’s top scorer at 12.0 points per game, has also contributed.

“We are still young,’’ Hardy said. “We have to fine tune a lot of things.’’

Tom Jackson

Jack Britt coach Nattlie McArthur said her young team is learning the system and playing well together so far.

Terry Sanford transfer Nyla Cooper leads the Britt scoring with 13.3 points per game. Amber Nealy it at 11.5 and Kaya Goldsby at 10.3.

She expects the tournament to be tough but thinks her team is ready for the challenge.

“It’s just a matter of making sure we make the right decisions in our transition, continuing to talk on the floor, being vocal and having fun while they are out there,’’ McArthur said.

 

Holiday Classic brackets

Boys
Len Maness Bracket
Thursday, Dec. 19
at Westover
4 p.m. - Wilmington Laney vs. E.E. Smith
5:30 p.m. - Westover at Middle Creek
7 p.m. - Fayetteville Christian vs. Cape Fear
8:30 p.m. - Seventy-First vs. Douglas Byrd
Friday, Dec. 20
Consolation bracket
at Westover
4 p.m. - Loser 1 vs. Loser 2
5:30 p.m. - Loser 3 vs. Loser 4.
Championship bracket
7 p.m. - Winner 1 vs. Winner 2
8:30 p.m. - Winner 3 vs. Winner 4.
Saturday, Dec. 21
at Westover
Consolation bracket
10:30 a.m. - Loser 5 vs. Loser 6
12 p.m. - Winner 5 vs. Winner 6
Championship bracket
at Westover
1:30 p.m. - Loser 7 vs. Loser 8 (third place)
at Capel Arena
8 p.m. - Winner 7 vs. Winner 8 (championship)
Ike Walker Sr. Bracket
Thursday, Dec. 19
at Jack Britt
4 p.m. - Wilmington Hoggard vs. Gray’s Creek
5:30 p.m. - Southern Lee vs. South View
7 p.m. - Terry Sanford vs. Corinth Holders
8:30 p.m. - Jack Britt vs. Pine Forest
Friday, Dec. 20
Consolation bracket
4 p.m. - Loser 1 vs. Loser 2
5:30 p.m. - Loser 3 vs. Loser 4
Championship bracket
7 p.m. - Winner 1 vs. Winner 2
8:30 p.m. - Winner 3 vs. Winner 4
Saturday, Dec. 21
at Jack Britt
Consolation bracket
10:30 a.m. - Loser 5 vs. Loser 6
12 p.m. - Winner 5 vs. Winner 6
Championship bracket
1:30 p.m. - Loser 7 vs. Loser 8 (third place)
at Capel Arena
4 p.m. - Winner 7 vs Winner 8
Girls
Gene Arrington Bracket
Thursday, Dec. 19
at South View
4 p.m. - Scotland vs. South View
5:30 p.m. - Wilmington Hoggard vs. Douglas Byrd
7 p.m. - E.E. Smith vs. Corinth Holders
8:30 p.m. - Seventy-First vs. Westover
Friday, Dec. 20
Consolation bracket
4 p.m. - Loser 1 vs. Loser 2
5:30 p.m. - Loser 3 vs. Loser 4
Championship bracket
7 p.m. - Winner 1 vs. Winner 2
8:30 p.m. - Winner 3 vs. Winner 4
Saturday, Dec. 21
Consolation bracket
10:30 a.m. - Loser 5 vs. Loser 6
12 p.m. - Winner 5 vs. Winner 6
Championship bracket
1:30 p.m. - Loser 7 vs. Loser 8 (third place)
at Capel Arena
2 p.m. - Winner 7 vs. Winner 8 (championship)
Tom Jackson Bracket
Thursday, Dec. 19
at Gray’s Creek
4 p.m. - Gray’s Creek vs. East Bladen
5:30 - Cape Fear vs. Union Pines
7 p.m. - Terry Sanford vs. Garner Magnet
8:30 p.m. - Pine Forest vs. Jack Britt
Friday, Dec. 20
Consolation bracket
4 p.m. - Loser 1 vs. Loser 2
5:30 p.m. - Loser 3 vs. Loser 4
Championship bracket
7 p.m. - Winner 1 vs. Winner 2
8:30 p.m. - Winner 3 vs. Winner 4
Saturday, Dec. 21
Consolation bracket
10:30 a.m. - Loser 5 vs. Loser 6
12 p.m. - Winner 5 vs. Winner 6
Championship bracket
1:30 p.m. - Loser 7 vs. Loser 8 (third place)
at Capel Arena
6 p.m. - Winner 7 vs. Winner 8 (championship)

Scholar athletes of the week: 12/11/19

21 01 carlosCarlos Villarreal

Pine Forest • Soccer • Senior

Villarreal is a member of the varsity soccer team and has a 4.2 weighted grade point average. In his free time Villarreal enjoys participating in travel soccer and volunteering at the Cumberland County Animal Shelter.

 

Elizabeth Johnson

Pine Forest• Bowling• Senior

Johnson is a member of the Trojan bowling team. She has a 4.2 weighted grade point average. Her other interests include competing in SkillsUSA events and working on computers as part of the Academy of Information Technology.

21 02 elizabeth johnson

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