We continue our weekly preseason high school football series with a hop over to Hillsborough to check in on the Orange Panthers. The Panthers tore through the competition a year ago, just falling short of perfection at the final hurdle, but veteran head coach Pat Moser is back for another run in 2014.
***Listen to the story***
The Panthers were sitting at the doorstep of history in 2013, with only the Southern Durham Spartans standing in their way of an undefeated season.
Coach Moser says he wishes his squad could have cleared the final hurdle, but losing to the eventual state champions, featuring a quarterback who recently committed to play at Wake Forest, is nothing to be ashamed of.
“For us to be 10-1 at the end of the season, we felt pretty good. It was a very talented and good team in Southern Durham. They proved that by going on to win the whole thing. As far as we were concerned, we had a lot of fun. It was a great year for OrangeHigh School. We’re looking forward to this year,” Coach Moser says.
The Orange skipper identified a bevy of teams to watch out for in 2014, including Bill Hall’s Northwood team, defending champion Southern Durham, and an improving Chapel Hill squad.
Coach Moser says playing in the ultra-competitive 3A Big Eight conference is a double-edged sword.
“It’s tough to play that kind of competition week in and week out, mainly because if you’re not playing well for some reason one night, you can lose. But at the same time, playing that kind of competition prepares you for anybody you’re going to play in the states,” Coach Moser says.
The unquestioned leader of this Panther team is senior signal caller Garrett Cloer. Coach Moser says Cloer’s garnering plenty of national attention at the college level and has been taking his own game to the next level in his preparations this offseason.
“He’s [Cloer] being recruited by everybody in the country. He’s a great student and a great leader. I think he’s set the tone for our whole team in the offseason. He’s worked really hard. Our other kids have worked really hard. We’ll see. I think we’ll be okay,” Coach Moser says.
If the man behind center wasn’t enough to get Coach Moser excited for his offense, the guy in the backfield should put him over the top. Running back Tay Jones can flat out fly.
“We have a great running back in Tay Jones. He had 1,800 yard rushing last year. He’s working right now in summer school to get eligible. Hopefully, he will make the grade and be with us,” Coach Moser says.
Pending a successful completion of summer coursework, Jones should be a terror for opposing defenses. But the true backbone to this Orange squad rests on the other end of the ball.
The Panther defense is a sight to behold. In 2013, Orange pitched four shutouts and held opponents to single digits in an emphatic eight games.
To move the ball against Orange is to accomplish something special. Coach Moser says he always prioritizes the defense, putting the best athletes on that side of the ball.
“We always put the most emphasis that we can on the defense. We try to play the best defense that we can. We two-platoon. We take our kids that can run and will hit. That’s who our defense is,” Coach Moser says.
One of the great traditions at Orange is the awarding of ‘Zero’ candy bars to the team after a full-game shutout is achieved. And true to form, Coach Moser says his kids are hungry for more chocolate in 2014.
“That’s something that the kids like. […] They like getting the Zero bar if they can hold people to zero. We’ll do that as well as maybe add a couple more positions,” Coach Moser says.
The fearless Panthers, with their key offensive playmakers and always ruthless defense, should be in the hunt for another conference title this fall.http://chapelboro.com/sports/high-school/grid-orange-high-panthers/
Orange High School and Cedar Ridge High School with both be participating in this year’s Orange County Project Graduation following the schools’ graduations.
Orange High School seniors turn their tassels Thursday at 4:30 p.m.; Cedar Ridge seniors do so at 7:30 p.m. Both ceremonies take place at the Dean Smith Center.
The event will be held on Thursday, June 12, at the Triangle Sportsplex in Hillsborough, from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
This will be Project Graduation’s 19th consecutive year celebrating the graduates of these Orange County high schools. The event serves as a chance to celebrate the graduation of these students in a family-oriented environment, among friends, and safe from risks of alcohol, drugs, and violence.http://chapelboro.com/news/pre-k-12-education/orange-county-high-schools-graduation-preview/
Two Chapelboro high school basketball teams put their No. 1 seeds on the line Saturday with a chance to move on to the state title game in their home county.
First, the Chapel Hill Tiger girls meet the West Craven Eagles for the second time this year. The Tigers took the 24-point win the first time around on route to a High School OT Holiday Tournament title. But, the Eagles have a 33-point-per-game threat they’ll have to shut down to secure the victory.
Chapel Hill has four consistently strong weapons of its own in Autumn West, Raziyah (rah-ZHIE-uh) Farrington, Catherine Romaine, and Jamella Smith, and it’s a team that’s proven it knows how to win.
Tipoff between the Tigers and the Eagles is scheduled for 12:00 noon in Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville. Tune in for pregame coverage on 97.9 FM and Chapelboro.com beginning at 11:30 a.m.
The Orange Panthers’ contest with the Hunt Warriors was pushed from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. likely due to weather-related travel issues.
The Panthers have proven themselves in the postseason showing onlookers just why they received the No. 1 seed. The most recent win—a 69-56 decision against West Brunswick—was one in which Orange had to fight off West on multiple occasions to take the 13-point win.
No. 2 seed Hunt is no pushover, though, as its averaging 15-point margins of victory so far in the postseason.
Tipoff between Orange and Hunt is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. in Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville. Due to the UNC-Duke men’s basketball game, WCHL Championship Sports will not be able to broadcast the game on the radio.
The state title game for both the 3A girls and boys will be hosted in the Dean Smith Center at UNC, but a victory in Fayetteville Saturday is the only way to get there.http://chapelboro.com/sports/high-school/chhs-girls-ohs-boys-seek-regional-basketball-titles-saturday/
In a back-and-forth game, the Orange Panthers never trailed and advanced to the East Regional Final with a 69-56 defeat of West Brunswick Wednesday night.
The Panthers got out to a hot start and took an 18-10 lead into the second quarter. The Trojans brought it back to a five-point difference early in the second, but turnovers got the better of them, and the Panthers extended the lead to 11 mid-way through the frame.
Orange continued the run before halftime and took the 37-22 lead into the locker room.
However, West Brunswick showed its fight to stay alive in the postseason nearly doubling its first-half score and outscoring Orange 21-12 in the third. The Panthers held on to a six-point lead with one quarter remaining.
The Orange defense came up big late in the game, and the offense capitalized. The Panthers pulled away to a double-digit lead again and held on for the 13-point win.
Orange’s Jawan Chambers led all players with 18 points. J.D. Brooks and Eryk Brandon-Dean followed him with 16 points each. The Panthers shot 55.8 percent from the field and held the Trojans to 37.9 percent.
In the first regional semifinal, Hunt used 61.5-percent shooting from the field in the second half to pull away and take the 68-60 defeat of Havelock.
Tipoff between Orange and Hunt is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. Saturday in Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville. You can hear all the action of the East Regional Final on Chapelboro.com.
The East Regional No. 1 seed Orange High School is looking for its tenth win in 11 games Wednesday night to advance to the Regional Final this weekend in Fayetteville.
The Panthers missed a rematch with their conference-foe Southern Spartans by just three points; Southern fell to West Brunswick 81-79 in the third round. Both teams combined for 57 points in the fourth quarter, but the Trojans outscored the Spartans by five in the final frame to take the win.
The Trojans tied for second in the 3A Mideastern conference behind New Hanover, which is a 4A team in the mixed conference.
No. 5 seed West Brunswick averages 61 points per game while Orange tallies nearly 70. In the state playoffs, the Panthers are averaging more than 75 points per game.
Tipoff between Orange and West Brunswick is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville.http://chapelboro.com/sports/high-school/ohs-boys-seek-regional-final-spot-vs-west-brunswick-wednesday/
HILLSBOROUGH – The NCHSAA East Regional’s No. 1 seed Orange proved just why it was given that seeding with an 86-78 defeat of rival and No. 9 seed Eastern Alamance. However, the Eagles never gave up and tested just how long the Panthers could hold on.
***Listen to the Game***
HILLSBOROUGH – J.D. Brooks and Tay Jones were a dynamic duo Friday night, powering the Orange High boys basketball team to an 86-78 defeat of Eastern Alamance in the third round of the 3A NCHSAA state playoffs.
Click here to listen to the game.
Brooks scored 21 points and hauled in 12 rebounds, while Jones added 13 points and five steals in an energetic effort as the Panthers advanced to the sectional finals Wednesday night in Fayetteville against No. 5 seed West Brunswick.
As good as Brooks and Keegan Crabtree (22 points before fouling out late) were for the Panthers, Orange coach Greg Motley said Jones keyed the win.
“Tay pushed himself beyond his limits,” Motley said. “He earned the game ball tonight.”
Perhaps that’s because he was so willing to sacrifice his body with a scrappy defensive effort that helped the Panthers hold off an Eagles squad led by Lamont Robinson’s 28 points.
The Mt. St. Mary’s bound guard was terrific as usual in keeping the Eagles in striking distance throughout with an array of baskets. When he fouled out on a reach-in with just more than four minutes left; Eastern Alamance’s chances were seriously damaged, however.
Jones saw to that with a slam dunk and a pair of free throws, while Brooks followed up his own miss at the charity stripe with a slam dunk to make it 80-75 with just less than two minutes remaining.
The Eagles were doomed thanks to some late turnovers and awful shooting behind the arc (4 of 31), while the Panthers were a more efficient 6 of 13.
Orange stormed out to a 16-4 lead midway through the first quarter, though Eastern Alamance closed out the stanza with an 11-5 run to make it 21-15.
Malcolm Summers got the Mebane-area squad within a hoop at 29-27 with a slam dunk in the second quarter. The Panthers quickly roared back to build a double-digit advantage as Crabtree took over offensively.
Brooks and Jones also keyed a third quarter run with consecutive slam dunks as Orange built a 70-55 lead heading into the final eight minutes.
Jones said a raucous home crowd helped Orange throughout the contest.
“I was focused and hyped, it was the crowd,” Jones said. “I also love playing with all my teammates.”
2014 NCHSAA State Playoffs
3A Boys’ Bracket
Two Chapelboro teams remain in the 3A NCHSAA girls’ and boys’ state basketball playoffs, and Friday night, the fight for the sectional finals is on.
The Chapel Hill girls are unbeaten through 28 games and aren’t showing any signs of letting up. While averaging 40-plus-point wins this season, the Tigers are averaging 53-point margins after two wins.
The No. 9-seeded Northern Guilford Nighthawks head to Chapel Hill Friday for a 7:00 p.m. tipoff in round three of the state playoffs. Tickets are $6.00 per person and can be purchased at the door.
The big rivalry game takes place in Hillsborough as the No. 1-seeded Orange Panthers host the No. 9-seeded Eastern Alamance Eagles.
The schools are separated by just 13 miles along highway 70.
The Eagles have two scoring threats—one who’s scoring 25 points per game. If the Panthers can shut down senior Lamont Robinson, they could be well on their way to the sectional finals mid-next week.
Tipoff between Orange and Eastern Alamance is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. WCHL Championship Sports will be on hand to broadcast with pregame coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are also $6.00 and can be purchased at the door.
HILLSBOROUGH – The 3A NCHSAA East Regional No. 1-seeded Orange Panthers held off the No. 16-seeded Chapel Hill Tigers to advance to the 3rd round of the playoffs, 72-63.
The Panthers meet their bitter rivals, the No. 9-seeded Eastern Alamance Eagles, Friday at 7:00 p.m. in Hillsborough.
***Listen to the CHHS at OHS Game***
Click here to read the game recap of this and other second-round games of Chapelboro teams.http://chapelboro.com/high-school-basketball/hs-boys-basketball-orange-72-chapel-hill-63/
Just two Chapelboro high school basketball teams remain in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association playoffs after round two Wednesday night.
The 3A East Regional’s No. 1 seed Orange held off No. 16 seed Chapel Hill for the 72-63 win. Orange junior Jawan Chambers and senior JD Brooks each contributed 16 points in the victory while senior Keegan Crabtree came on late to hit his average of 14.
Click here to listen to the game.
After one quarter, Chapel Hill had a three-point lead, 19-16. But, the team that’s so good at getting out to an early lead kept its cool and pulled ahead in the second quarter. With a 43-34 lead at the half, the Panthers stifled late surges by the Tigers and advanced.
Chapel Hill junior Jeremy Werden tallied a game-high-tying 16 points, part of which brought the Tigers from being down 15 to only down seven in the fourth quarter.
The contest marked the final game for three Tigers, Shane Turner, Josh Hennen, and Karl Hill, but they take with them a regular season title of the 3A Big Eight Conference and a trip to the NCSHAA second round.
Orange hosts neighbor and rival Eastern Alamance Friday night in the third round. You can hear every bounce of the ball as we’ll have the call from WCHL Championship Sports. Pregame coverage begins at 6:30 p.m.
The Chapel Hill girls continued their winning ways Wednesday night with another dominant victory, 59-13 against Swansboro.
The 3A East Regional No. 1-seeded Tigers left no question in the outcome jumping out to a 21-2 first-quarter lead. After an uncharacteristic 8-5 second quarter, the Tigers didn’t allow a point to be score in quarter number three and coasted to the 46-point win.
Chapel Hill junior Raziyah Farrington shot 71 percent from the field and led all players with 15 points; senior Cat Romaine followed with ten points.
No. 9 seed Northern Guilford waits in the wings for Chapel Hill and will travel to the Hill Friday night.
Keeping an eye on a potential Big-Eight rematch, the No. 10-seeded Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders remained alive with an upset of the No. 7-seeded Eastern Wayne Warriors.
Jess Lowe’s Crusaders have a tough road ahead if they want to meet the Tigers for a fourth time this year, though. No. 2 seed Northern Nash hosts Cardinal Gibbons Friday. If the Crusaders can make it into the Sectional Finals, it’ll likely be to face No. 3 seed West Craven.
The Carrboro Jaguar girls’ 2A NCHSAA playoff run came to an end Wednesday night with a 77-52 defeat by the hands of Beddingfield.
The No. 24-seeded Jaguars pulled off the biggest upset of the first round with a ten-point defeat of the No. 9-seeded Red Springs Red Devils. However, No. 8 seed Beddingfield was just too much for Carrboro as the Jaguars’ season came to a close with an 8-18 overall record.