Smithfield’s Community Park will again host the North Carolina Wiffle Ball Tournament July 20-21, with this year’s edition being the 25th annual State event.
Three-time champions Hand Picked J’s will attempt to become the first team to ever “four-peat” in the slow-pitch event, which normally draws between 16-25 teams.
The tournament field is made up of four-man teams, and trophies are awarded for first and second place, as well as MVP and an All-Tournament team. Bats and balls are provided, as are umpires for all games. The entry fee for the double-elimination event is $60 per team.
The tournament began in 1982 as the Kenly Wiffle Ball Tournament, making this the 32nd consecutive year that a tournament has been held. The event is the second oldest Wiffle ball tourney in the world, trailing only Mishawaka, Indiana’s World Wiffle Ball Championship, which began in 1980.
Football Combines: Cleveland High running back Isaac Martin posted some impressive numbers this spring during the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas combine at South Johnston High.
Martin, The 5-foot-10 and 184 pounds, Martin had 40-yard dashes of 4.40 and 4.41. He bench pressed 185 pounds 27 times, third only to 30 by 6-5, 298-pound Arthur Williams of Fayetteville E.E. Smith and 28 by 6-2, 276-pound John Holder of Wilson Fike.
Martin rushed for 2,185 yards and scored 28 touchdowns in 2012 during Cleveland’s 11-2 season.
At the North Carolina Blue-Gray Combine in Greensboro last month, two local players had solid outings.
Garner runner/safety Samuel Stidwell IV (5-foot-9, 175 pounds) had 20 reps in the bench press and ran a 4.6 40.
Corinth Holders receiver and cornerback Tori Carmichael (5-8, 170) ran a 4.71 40, had 17 reps in the bench press and posted a 33-inch vertical jump.
Outdoor Prep Track Nationals: Southeast Raleigh High and Clayton High athletes had solid performances at the New Balance Outdoor Nationals championship in Greensboro last weekend.
Athletes cannot compete as members of high school teams because the spring high school season is over. Southeast Raleigh was the Bulldog Track Club and was third in the girls 4x100-meter relay.
Southeast’s Tametris Morrison won the 400 hurdles (59.59).
Shakinah Brooks of Southeast Raleigh was third in the long jump (19 feet, 6 inches) and Clayton’s Mollie Williams was fourth in the 100-meter hurdles (13.85.
Peachee is Big South Track Athlete of the Year: Senior Dakota Peachee of the High Point University men’s track & field team was named the Big South Men’s Track & Field Athlete of the Year. Peachee became HPU’s first NCAA Division I All-American in men’s track this season.
The West Johnston High grad and Garner resident closed out his collegiate career with a fifth-place finish in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the NCAA Championship on June 7 in Eugene, Oregon. He ran an HPU-record time of 8:43.04, which is also the Big South Conference record.
Peachee had a stellar outdoor season that also included a win in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the Big South Championship in a then-career best time of 8:51 on April 19 in Lynchburg, Va. He came back the next day to place third in the 1,500-meter at the Big South Championship.
Peachee also set a career-best of 3:46.45 in the 1,500-meter at the Liberty Twilight Qualifier and won the 3,000-meter steeplechase in a then-HPU record of 8:46.69 at the Virginia Challenge.
Another Barbour in the GNRC softball ranks: The Greater Neuse River 4A Conference softball ranks will feature two members of the Barbour family as head coaches next spring. Morgan Barbour, the daughter of Garner coach Moe Barbour, has been named the head softball coach at Knightdale.
Morgan Barbour, who coached junior varsity softball in the spring, will take over where four-year coach Adam Hamrick is leaving off. “He was a huge loss, but having Morgan in the varsity program, we’re not going to miss a beat,” Knightdale athletic director Guy Blough said of the transition.
Barbour played softball for both Garner and N.C. State.
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