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Led by singles champion Hailey Kincaid (second from left), Draughn won the county girls tennis championship on Monday in Icard. Also pictured (from left) are Katelyn Cozort, Abby Parker, Haley Lowman, Kaitlyn Kincaid and Regan Winkler.

ICARD — The Draughn girls tennis team ended East Burke’s run atop the county by claiming the Jim McCormick/Marsha Crump Cup at the Burke County championships hosted by EBHS on Monday.

The Lady Wildcats were most recently county champs in 2013 when they claimed the event for third time over its first four seasons.  Draughn went worst to first after finishing fourth in 2018; EB had won the last three titles dating back to 2015.

Draughn scored nine points on Monday, while runner-up Freedom had six, EB four and Patton three.

The Lady ’Cats were led by singles champion Hailey Kincaid, a senior who claimed an 8-1 quarterfinal win, an 8-2 semifinal win and an 8-3 finals victory. Patton’s Kadira McClure was singles runner-up, winning her first two matches by identical 8-3 margins.

EB’s Erin Carico and Paige Houston each reached the semis with 8-2 and 8-6 opening-round wins respectively.

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Freedom's Blaikley Crooks (left) and Savannah Vandergriff repeated as county doubles champions on Monday.

In doubles, Freedom seniors Savannah Vandergriff and Blaikley Crooks repeated as county champs with wins of 8-3, 8-3 and 8-6. They downed Draughn’s Abby Parker and Haley Lowman in the finals after Parker/Lowman had won by 8-2 scores in their first two matches.

EB’s Zoie Smith/Emily Rector and Jaden Ramsey/Daisy Jantes also reached the semis as each Lady Cavalier entry in the tourney won one match.



EB 3, Patton 1

The host Lady Cavaliers (6-1, 2-1 Northwestern Foothills 2A Conf.) stormed back after dropping the first set Monday, taking momentum for good on a 15-0 scoring run in the third set of a 17-25, 25-22, 25-5, 25-22 win.

“Our back row played solid,” EB coach Tracy Greene said. “Patton came out in that first set firing with their good outside hitters. We have to limit our mistakes. Overall, we had a good solid performance.”

The Lady Cavs were led by Graleigh Hildebran (24 assists, 11 digs, six kills), Ashlyn Stilwell (26 digs), Erica Clontz (22 kills, eight digs), Kendall Buff (12 digs, four aces) and Riley Haas (six kills, four blocks).

Attempting to force a fifth set, Patton (6-3, 1-2 NWFAC) tied things 13-apiece in the fourth and never trailed by more than three points afterward but couldn’t get over the hump. No PHS individual statistics were available.

In a 25-20, 25-20 JV triumph, EB was paced by Aubree Grigg’s eight kills and Jordan Newton’s seven assists.

- Michael Thomas


Draughn 3, Bunker Hill 1

The Lady Wildcats (6-2, 2-1 NWFAC) won 25-19, 25-14, 19-25, 25-20 in Valdese on Monday. Draughn’s JV squad also won, 25-20, 25-22. Individual statistics were not available.


Watauga 3, Freedom 0

The Lady Patriots (2-3, 1-1 Northwestern 3A/4A Conf.) stumbled Monday in Boone, 8-25, 14-25, 13-25, against the undefeated Pioneers. Individual statistics were not available.



Freedom 3, Chase 0

The Patriots (4-2-1) claimed a third consecutive win Monday in Rutherford County as Kevin Vasquez had one goal and one assist. Freedom also got a goal each by Beckham Ixchajachal and Patrick Sandy. Goalkeeper Cole Johnson had three saves in the shutout.

Freedom outshot Chase 9-3 and had six of the game’s seven corner kicks.


EB 6, McDowell 2

The Cavaliers (2-4) snapped a three-game losing skid on Monday in Icard as Antony Salgado had a hat trick, Anthony Thao added two goals with one assist and Micah Chrisco had three assists.

EB’s Josh Aguirre also scored a goal, and Jimenez Andres and Brandon Pruett supplied an assist apiece. Garrett Pitts (six saves) and David Benitez (two saves) combined at goalkeeper in the victory.

Keeper Marco Benitez had five saves despite a 3-0 JV loss for the Cavs.


Hickory 5, Patton 2

The visiting Panthers (2-4-1) led 1-0 and 2-1 but couldn’t hang on Monday, subsequently allowing three straight goals by halftime. Patton’s goals came in the 16th minute via Jesse Stapleton (assisted by Destin Joseph) and in the 26th minute by Abner Ramirez (assisted by Will Mejia).

Daniel Hernandez (four saves) and Ethan Vue (five saves) split time in goal. Patton was outshot by a 14-6 margin and managed two corner kicks to Hickory’s seven.


The News Herald sports department can be reached at sports@morganton.com.

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