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The North Carolina American Legion Area IV playoffs will begin on Tuesday. The first round is a best three-out-of-five series. Of our area teams:

Alexander County, the number three seed in the east, takes on Hickory, the number six seed in the west.

Burke County is the number nine seed from the west and will take on top seeded west squad Shelby.

Caldwell County is the number five seed from the west and will take on East seeded number four, Mint Hill.

It was another game, another hero, and another win for the Hickory Crawdads Sunday night, this time with first baseman Ronald Guzman coming through with a walk-off, RBI single to center to give the 'Dads a 4-3 victory over the visiting Greenville Drive at L.P. Frans Stadium.

One night after the Crawdads came away with a 5-4 walk-off win over the Drive courtesy of a 9th inning passed ball, the 'Dads utilized a hit, a walk, and a hit batsman before Guzman delivered the game-winning base knock. The timely hit snapped a 0-33 skid for the Hickory slugger, giving him his first hit of the second half of the season.

For the third straight ballgame it was Greenville who took the initial advantage, as left fielder Kendrick Perkins continued his assault on Hickory pitchers with a RBI single in the 2nd for a 1-0 Drive lead. Greenville doubled the score to 2-0 the next inning, when shortstop Tzu-Wei Lin drove home Carlos Coste on a RBI groundout.

Crawdads center fielder Lewis Brinson provided the Hickory response in the bottom of the 3rd, as the leadoff hitter crushed a solo home run to left to cut the score to 2-1. Brinson came through again in his next at-bat in the 6th, lining an opposite field solo blast to right-center to tie the game at 2-2. Two batters later, the 'Dads used the long ball one more time when Joe Jackson crushed a no-doubt solo homer to right for a 3-2 Hickory lead.

The Drive came right back with a game tying run of their own however, as Perkins doubled and scored in the 7th to deadlock and game at 3-3. The Crawdads had opportunities to re-take the lead in both the 8th and 9th frames, but it wasn't until extra innings that the team finally came through.

Jackson led off the frame with a single to left, followed by a walk to Nomar Mazara, and a hit-by-pitch to Ryan Cordell on a bunt attempt to load the bases with no outs for Guzman. The 6'4" Dominican Republic native then lined a base hit up the middle past the drawn in infield to score Jackson and give the 'Dads the 4-3 win.

Guzman ended the night 1-5 with his game-winning knock, while Brinson went 2-5 with two home runs and Jackson finished 2-5 with a homer.

Crawdads All-Star closer Cody Kendall (7-2) earned the win with two scoreless innings of relief, while Drive reliever Raynel Valette (4-1) took the loss after giving up one run on four hits during his one-plus innings pitched.

The Crawdads (8-2) have now won three straight and 24 of their last 27 games to take over sole possession of first place in the South Atlantic League Northern Division. The 'Dads will go for the 4-game sweep of the Drive (3-8) Monday night, with first pitch scheduled for 7:00 pm.

Monday, 30 June 2014 11:59

Crawdads Win After Passed Ball

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The Hickory Crawdads found yet another wild way to add to their streak of wins Saturday night, as the 'Dads utilized a 2-out, 2-strike passed ball to score Jairo Beras from third and give the team a 5-4, walk-off win over the Greenville Drive at L.P. Frans Stadium.

All five of the Crawdads runs in the win were unearned, with the team plating three error assisted tallies in the 5th, tying the game with the help of an error fueled run in the 8th, and ultimately winning the contest on the timely passed ball in the 9th. Beras led the Hickory offense all evening going 2-2 with a double, two walks and two runs scored. The 'Dads have now won 23 of their last 26 ballgames, and remain in first place in the Northern Division with an 8-2 second half record.

For the second straight night it was the Drive who jumped out to the initial advantage, as Greenville right fielder Kendrick Perkins lined an opposite field, solo home run to left for a 1-0 score. That would be one of the only blemishes on the night for Crawdads starting pitcher Akeem Bostick, who allowed only two runs on four hits, one walk, and three strikeouts over 5.1 IP.

With Bostick holding the potent Greenville offense at bay, Hickory rallied for three runs in the bottom of the 5th to take their first lead of the game at 3-1. Shortstop Michael De Leon brought home the first tally with a 2-out, RBI triple to left-center, followed immediately after by a 2-run homer to left-center by Lewis Brinson.

The Drive quickly responded themselves, plating a run in the 6th to narrow the score to 3-2 before coming away with two runs in the 7th to re-take the lead at 4-3. Both Greenville rallies were driven by walks, as the Drive drew six free passes over the two inning stretch.

The 'Dads proved resilient however as the club rallied for the game-tying run in the 8th, with Nomar Mazara and Ryan Cordell both singling before Mazara took third on an error and eventually came home on a double play ground out by Kellin Deglan for a 4-4 tie.

The decisive 9th inning began with an infield single by Beras, who beat out a throw to first to put the winning run on base with no outs. After being sacrificed to second on a bunt from Luis Marte and taking third on a ground out by Evan Van Hoosier, Beras looked like he would be stranded 90 feet from home when Michael De Leon fell behind against Greenville reliever Jacob Dahlstrand. Dahlstrand's 0-2 pitched missed outside however and got by the glove of All-Star catcher Jake Romanski for a passed ball, allowing Beras to dash home from third for the game-winning run.

The wild finish made a winner out of Hickory reliever Jose Valdespina (2-0), who threw two scoreless innings out of the bullpen on two hits and two strikeouts. Dahlstrand (4-4) took the loss after giving up two unearned runs over 3.2 frames on the mound.

De Leon joined Beras in having a good night at the plate finishing 2-3 with a triple, walk, RBI and run scored, while Brinson ended the game 1-3 with his fifth long ball of the season, two RBIs and a walk.

The Crawdads (8-2) and Drive (3-7) will play again Sunday evening at 5:00 pm in game three of their four-game series.

Hickory Motor Speedway
Unofficial Race Results for 6/28/2014

4-Cylinders - Feature
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 98P Chase Pollard Taylorsville, NC
2 99 Matthew Elledge Statesville, NC
3 00G Eddie Gilbert Newton, NC
4 28T Dennis Trivette Newton, NC
5 17 Curtis Pardue Hickory, NC
6 6T Rodney Trivette Newton, NC
7 09 Randy Canipe Maiden, NC
8 9C Tim Canipe Maiden, NC
9 98 Rob Lewis Morganton, NC DNS

Late Model - Feature
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 44 Dillon Bassett Winston Salem, NC
2 36 Anthony Anders Easley, SC
3 00 Shane Lee Newton, NC
4 88B Josh Berry Hendersonville, TN
5 8G David Garbo, Jr. Storington, CT
6 23R Payton Ryan Concord, NC
7 98 Todd Gilliland Sherrills Ford, NC
8 9 William Byron Charlotte, NC
9 82 Will Burns Simpsonville, SC
10 12 Austin McDaniel Harrisburg, NC
11 15 Justin Bolton Greensburg, PA
12 5H Bret Holmes Munford, AL
13 25 Matt Piercy Conover, NC
14 59 Coleman Pressley Asheville, NC
15 7S Justin Crider Statesville, NC
16 8 Chandler LeVan Statesville, NC
17 75H Landon Huffman Claremont, NC
18 87 Hayden Woods Piney Flats, TN
19 45 Dalton Sargeant Winston-Salem, NC
20 25D Kate Dallenbach Mooresville, NC
21 77 C J Hulsey El Paso, TX
22 88T Robert Tyler Gainesville, GA
23 7 Ashley Huffman Connelly Springs, NC

Limited Late Model - Feature
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 7S Taylor Stricklin Mount Ulla, NC
2 51 Jeremy Pelfrey Lenoir, NC
3 1B Trent Barnes Whiteford, MD
4 77B Travis Byrd Sherrills Ford, NC
5 18 Casey Pierce Lenoir, NC
6 12D Evan Duggins Tobaccoville, NC
7 09 Amber Colvin Mooresville, NC
8 22 Dan Moore Conover, NC
9 92S Kyle Southern , NC
10 7 Whitney Lail Hildebran, NC
11 43 Greg Wise Candler, NC
12 25 Allen Huffman Hickory, NC
13 09R Ryan Morris Honey Brook, PA
14 34 Patrick Rachels China Grove, NC
15 21 Monty Cox Granite Falls, NC
16 13J Mark Johnson Newton, NC
17 8C Tony Cosentino Terrell, NC
18 27 Chris Joyce Concord, NC DQ

Renegades - Feature
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 2 Charlie Neill Hickory, NC
2 09 Blake Walker Lenoir, NC
3 77H Shawn Hayes Lenoir, NC
4 4 Gregory Austin Granite Falls, NC
5 17S Stephen Shore Stanley, NC
6 8 Kenneth Roberts Hickory, NC
7 85 Dustin Walker Granite Falls, NC
8 22 Daniel Moore Conover, NC
9 6 Darren Dickinson Hickory, NC
10 69 Ben Campbell Hudson, NC
11 16 Carroll McKinney Hildebran, NC

Street Stocks - Feature
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 10T Kevin Townsend Lenoir, NC
2 03 Kevin Eby Lenior, NC
3 2 Larry Mosher Taylorsville, NC
4 18D Cody DeMarmels Newton, NC
5 64 Marshall Sutton Burnsville, NC
6 16S Jonathon Smith Hudson, NC
7 3P Chase Pollard Taylorsville, NC
8 21 Kevin Saam Hudson, NC
9 14 Samuel Thompson Lenoir, NC
10 05 Max Collins Tolland, CT
11 10 Ethan Johnson Hudson, NC
12 17C Hugh Compton Mooresville, NC
13 33 Mark Whitten Gastonia, NC
14 47 Tyler McKinney Hickory, NC

Five former Appalachian State University student-athletes have been selected for induction into the Appalachian State Athletics Hall of Fame, Appalachian State’s Former Athletes Association announced on Saturday.

Track and field’s Jennifer Claud-White (2001-05), football’s Matt Isenhour (2003-06) and Damon Scott (1993-96), men’s soccer’s Frank Kemo (1973-76) and women’s golf’s Angie Ridgeway (1983-87) will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Saturday, Sept. 6 in conjunction with Appalachian State football’s home opener game against Campbell.

All five honorees will be recognized during Appalachian State athletics’ annual Hall of Fame Induction breakfast at 9 a.m. on Sept. 6 in the Blue Ridge Ballroom at the Plemmons Student Union. A limited number of tickets are available at $15 per person and reservations can be made by contacting Natalie Harkey at (828) 262-3108 or harkeynm@appstate.edu.

The group will also be honored at halftime of that day’s gridiron clash between the Mountaineers and Camels at Kidd Brewer Stadium, which kicks off at 6 p.m. Tickets are available now as part of Appalachian State’s full, half and flex season-ticket plans. Single-game tickets go on sale Tuesday, Aug. 5.

JENNIFER CLAUD-WHITE (Track and Field — 2002-05)
Sprinter and jumper was a nine-time Southern Conference champion ... won SoCon Outdoor titles in the 200-meter dash (2002, ‘04, ‘05) and 100-meter dash (2002, ‘04) ... also earned SoCon Indoor championships in the 55-meter dash (2002), 200-meter dash (2004), long jump (2005) and triple jump (2005) ... earned SoCon Freshman of the Year honors (2002) and was named as the SoCon Outdoor Most Outstanding Athlete in 2004 ... holds the Appalachian State indoor record in the 60-meter dash (7.44).

MATT ISENHOUR (Football — 2003-06)
Two-time All-American helped Appalachian State to its first two of three-straight NCAA FCS national titles in 2005 and 2006 ... anchored an offensive line that paved the way for Appalachian State’s all-time leading rusher, Kevin Richardson (HOF ‘13) ... three-time all-SoCon selection earned the Jacobs Blocking Trophy as the league’s top offensive lineman in 2005.

FRANK KEMO (Men’s Soccer — 1973-76)
Four-time all-SoCon selection finished his career with 48 career goals, good for fourth in school history ... helped the Mountaineers to three-straight league titles (1973, ‘74, ‘75) and their first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament in 1975 ... was a member of the winningest team in school history, leading the Apps to a 12-1-0 record in 1975 ... named as Appalachian State’s Male Athlete of the Year by the Rhododendron yearbook in 1976-77 ... served as team co-captain his final two years.

ANGIE RIDGEWAY (Women’s Golf —1983-87)
Four-year letterwinner was Appalachian State’s all-time winningest golfer until 2012 ... ranks ninth in school history for career stroke average (81.26) ... is eighth all-time in lowest 18-hole round (71) ... tied for second in App State history in individual tournament wins ... played professionally on the LPGA tour for 12 years following her graduation in 1987 ... played in over 190 events including six U.S. Opens .. posted six career top-10 finishes, 10 top-15 showings and was in the top-25 on 21 occasions ... has served as the head women’s golf coach at Wofford for the last 10 years, where she has led the Terriers to eight tournament wins.

DAMON SCOTT (Football —1993-96)
Former All-American and all-SoCon honoree ranks fourth in Appalachian State history in career rushing yards (3,800) and attempts (745) ... ranks second in rush yards per game (95.0) and fifth in career rushing touchdowns (38) ... is one of just of three Mountaineer running backs to post multiple 1,000-yard seasons ... eclipsed the 100-yard mark 20 times in his career, good for second in school history ... scored 41 career touchdowns and is tied for sixth in the Appalachian record books in scoring with 250 points (41td/2xp).

The Hickory Crawdads turned to a familiar ally to lead them back to the win column Friday night, as the 'Dads utilized home runs from both Kellin Deglan and Jairo Beras to come away with a series opening 6-4 win over the Greenville Drive in front of 2,783 fans at L.P. Frans Stadium.

Coming off their first consecutive losses in six weeks, the Crawdads quickly righted the ship with a middle-inning rally and win against Greenville. Deglan (2-4, HR, 2 RBI) and Beras (3-4, HR, RBI) led the 'Dads 10-hit attack, that also included a multi-hit game from Joe Jackson (2-4, 2 RBI). The win is the 22nd in the last 25 games for the surging Crawdads.

It was the Drive who jumped out to the early advantage however, as Greenville got a solo homer from Kendrick Perkins and a RBI sacrifice fly by All-Star Carlos Asuaje in the top of the 3rd for a 2-0 lead. The Crawdads responded with a double by Lewis Brinson in the bottom of the frame, followed two batters later by a RBI groundout from Jackson to make the score 2-1.

The score remained the same until the home half of the 5th, when Deglan crushed a two-out, two-run blast to right field off of Greenville starter Myles Smith to put the 'Dads ahead 3-2. The long ball was the 10th of the season for the hot-hitting Canadian, and his third in his last three games played.

Hickory pushed the lead to 6-2 with three more runs in the 6th, this time with Beras kick starting the frame with an opposite field solo shot to right-center for his 2nd home run of the year. Luis Marte followed with a double and Brinson walked, before Jackson drove in a run with a RBI single and Nomar Mazara plated the frame's third tally on a groundout.

Greenville narrowed the score to 6-4 when Asuaje roped a 2-run homer to right off of Crawdads reliever Kevin Pucetas in the 8th, but the 'Dads would hold on from there with Josh McElwee striking out a pair in a perfect 9th inning to preserve the Crawdads 6-4 victory.

Hickory starter Cole Wiper (5-6) earned the win after holding Greenville to two runs on five hits and no walks while striking out six during his five innings pitched. Smith (3-5) took the loss for the Drive with three runs given up on seven hits, three walks, and two strikeouts over 4.2 innings. McElwee picked up his sixth save of the year with his scoreless ninth.

The Crawdads (7-2) and Drive (3-6) will play again Saturday night at 7:00 pm in game two of their four game series.

Lenoir-Rhyne University has named Tammy DeCesare Head Women’s Soccer Coach, Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Neill McGeachy announced today. DeCesare becomes the sixth head coach in program history.

DeCesare comes to L-R after spending the past three seasons (2011-13) as an Assistant Coach at Queens University of Charlotte. Last year, the Royals earned their first Top 25 national ranking in school history in their initial season in the South Atlantic Conference.

DeCesare was also Head Women’s Soccer Coach at Western Carolina (2005-09) and Coastal Carolina (2010) prior to her stint at Queens.

"I’m extremely excited about this opportunity and want to thank Neill McGeachy for his confidence in my abilities to lead this program,” said DeCesare. “Lenoir-Rhyne has a tradition of soccer excellence. I look forward to building upon the legacy that has been created and continuing to compete for a future national championship.”

“Tammy (DeCesare) brings the experience and the coaching talent to take our women’s soccer program to an elite status,” said McGeachy.

As Catamount mentor, DeCesare led Western Carolina to a 58-36-13 mark including two Southern Conference Tournament Championships and two berths in the NCAA Division I Playoffs (2005 and 2008). The 2005 season was the best in school history as the Catamounts finished 18-6 overall with 13 shutouts.

In her lone season with Coastal Carolina, DeCesare led the Chanticleers to a share of the Big South Regular Season Championship and a 10-8-2 mark.

DeCesare has also been actively involved in the Olympic Development Program (ODP). DeCesare has been a North Carolina Development Program Girls Coach for the past 10 years and was a Region III Olympic Development Coach and Administrator.

DeCesare started her collegiate coaching career at UNC Wilmington where she spent six years (1999-04) as an assistant. DeCesare was also Head Women’s Soccer Coach at East Rowan High School in Salisbury, N.C., in 1997 and 1998.

DeCesare earned her undergraduate degree from Catawba in 1996 before earning her Master’s of Education in Curriculum Design and Instructional Supervision in 2002 from UNC Wilmington. Currently, DeCesare is pursuing her Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership at UNC Charlotte.

DeCesare was a standout dual sport athlete at Catawba, playing both women’s soccer and women’s basketball.

DeCesare was an all-conference honoree and team MVP for the Indians’ soccer team and led Catawba to two league tournament titles (1993 and 1994) and a SAC Regular Season Championship (1993). In women’s basketball, DeCesare was part of the 1993 Food Lion SAC Tournament Championship squad.

Lenoir-Rhyne is coming off its fourth consecutive South Atlantic Conference Championship and fourth straight berth to the NCAA Division II National Tournament last fall. In 2014, the Bears finished 14-4-2 overall including a 9-1-1 mark in league play. DeCesare replaces Cally Morrill, who took the head coaching position at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014 15:02

Greater Hickory Metro Basketball Camp

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Well summer is the time for various camps, another one to tell you about is the Hickory Parks & Recreation Department’s Greater Hickory Metro Basketball camp July 7th through the 11th and the Metro Basketball Elite Academy, July 14th -18th. The camps are open to boys and girls who are rising second through 9th graders.

Applications are available at all recreation centers in Hickory or online at hmbbasketball@hickorync.gov.

The Elite Academy is for boys and girls entering grades 7 through 12.

Both camps will be at the Highland Recreation Center.


Tuesday, 24 June 2014 14:59

CVCC Vollyball Camp

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CVCC Volleyball Camp starts July 7th. CVCC Head Coach Shannon Hudson will lead instruction at the camps and her assistant, Mark Wimberley, and some CVCC players will also work the sessions.

For more information email cvccvolleyball@yahoo.com or call (828) 327 –7000 ext. 4566.



Tuesday, 24 June 2014 14:56

LRU Softball Camps

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The Lenoir Rhyne University Softball Team has announced two camps for the month of July. Overall Skills Camp begins July 7th. College Prep Advanced Skills Camp July 22, 23 & July 29 & 30.

For more information contact LRU Head Softball Coach Shena Hollar at (828) 328-7133 or email her at hollers@lr.edu.